Making CLIMATE MARKETS more TRANSPARENT through technology | Francisco Benedito | TBCY
Welcome to another episode of The Brand Called You. A vodcast and podcast show that brings you leadership lessons, knowledge, experience and wisdom from hundreds of successful individuals from around the world. I am your host, Ashutosh Garg and today I have with me, a very, very accomplished entrepreneur in the area of climate and climate change. Mr. Francisco Benedito from
Spain. Fran, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for inviting me. Thank you. Fran is the CEO of Climate Trade. He is the co founder of Climate Coin. He was awarded as the best organization for decarbonizing the travel industry. And he has been voted amongst the top 100 SDG influencers. So Fran, let's talk about climate trade. Tell me about this venture. Well, climate trade is a marketplace focused on the climate space, we detected back in 2017, there were so many efficiencies in the carbon markets. And well, we can call it climate markets, because it's not only about carbon. And basically, what we found out is that
we could apply technology to make more of these more efficient, more transparent and more traceable. Okay. So that's when we create the platform. Basically, climate trade is a marketplace where we put in touch developers of climate related projects worldwide, with corporations around the world in order to be able to offset their carbon footprint or by climate related products and services. So basically, for you to see carbon markets, which is important for the people to understand what is climate trade.
So basically, carbon markets are built back in 1997, in the UN in one of the events that the UN makes every year they come. So in that fifth one, it was in Japan. So it was called creating what is called the protocol Kyoto. So basically, the carbon credits were created in order to incentivize the generation of projects and be able to fund projects all around the world in order to decarbonize the planet.
So basically, a company that is polluting in let's say, a developed country or like economies that are more or advanced, these companies need to pay for the pollution, where, to companies that do the opposite in emerging markets. Why is this because normally emerging markets do not have funding for, let's say, funding that project. So, we bring the thing to the companies that are polluting and so we measure these on tons of CO2, every ton of CO2 emitted is one carbon credit. So, what we do is we put in touch the people that is making projects, reforestation, renewable projects, all these generate mitigations and avoidance of CO2, and they sell that to the companies that do the opposite that pollute.
Basically, we create a marketplace that we put in touch both and we get a fee per transaction. Wonderful. So, for my viewers and listeners, help me understand with a few examples, which are some of the kinds of businesses that are climate negative and some which are climate positive. Like basically, imagine the most polluting sectors in the world are our oil companies. Airline sector
is very, very relevant also, transportation, fashion. So basically, today, in terms of sector that we are working with that we can say the financial industry is is very advanced on these and the most straightforward in terms to become a carbon neutral, at the end to save carbon negative or carbon positive. It requires a little bit more not only being carbon neutral. So, I mean for you to see for the audience to see and to hear is basically you have a target now, so the companies, thanks to Paris Agreement, you have a target towards 2050. Or before, like the companies and governments need to achieve zero emissions specially the government's by 2050. So obviously, that comes to the companies and there is a strong regulations in Europe coming up on that part. So basically the companies established
target to achieve Net Zero. So philosophical question for you. if I am a company, which is releasing a lot of pollution and carbon negative in the environment, but I make a lot of money, I can buy credits, and continue to do all the negative things. Well, that's not going to happen. And I explain you why. I mean, there are two things. That's why we created the climate trade. Now, basically, climate three uses blockchain technology to provide transparency and traceability. So when you do an offset, when you buy an offset, the most important part is to know two things. One is that effectively,
that offset is a high quality offset. That is being canceled, it's been put under your name in terms of my tone is being put in under my name for real. And that's what in the past was called double counting, because people were selling several times the same. But the most important part is to know that the fans are going to the developer,
because he's is the one that is making the efforts to do that. And I'll go to your point. I mean, if I'm a company that I'm polluting, first thing, we need to know if that company is doing greenwashing originally. So for that is important for is transparency, traceability, I want the fans to see the fans that go to the developer, pay the fair price to the developer, that's very important. Because if you develop a project, you waste your money,
you invest your money, and then you don't have any return. We are not saving the planet. No, we are not making the force on that side. But second thing that is important is your question. The regulations, and consumers and investors are not gonna let these companies to do that. I mean, the investors are putting pressure in listed companies to do things correctly. Because if not, the investors of that investors will pour money on their investment funds, you know, and consumer's the same. Wonderful, wonderful. So based on all your experience, what are some of the key challenges we face with regard to climate change? Always has been about finance. So
it is I mean, I was happy to hear about Elon Musk. So weirdly, most of us admire. And we hear that they were saying, Okay, why don't you pay from your fortune? These many millions 1000s, I don't know how much the amount exactly what it was.
6 billion. So it was 6 billion. So they were saying okay, well, then you basically say, okay, how can I know where my money is going? That's traceability. That's transparency. I mean, if we get that, that's blockchain, that's why we use blockchain for this. I want to know where my money is going, I want to see how
much positive impact my money generate, I don't want my money to go to the pocket of an inefficient government or whatever. So that's the thing. So the problem of the world is we need to put the money in the right places to generate a positive impact. But that's why we created the organization, we want to help technologies, projects that can be a scale up with not only finance, guidance, and like we are helping companies that do not have any commercial power, like we do. But they are brilliant technologies, or scientists that we are helping to grow that technology. So basically we need that. And you know, the world is going through a pandemic, almost two years now, it is often said that the pandemic has given earth time to heal. And therefore, a lot of the climate change problems have now been resolved. I'd love to get your perspective that you know,
the planet is able to heal itself. But then we as humans come and mess it up every time. That's exactly like that. I mean, as soon as we get I mean, the only good thing we had about the pandemic is that some people change his mindset.
In my opinion, the only thing like we saw this as an advice for what is about to come. So if that is helping us to change our mindset to recycle more, do not drop waste anywhere, to behave more to do more. I always say that is a smaller force by any one of us. I mean, I'm doing the right things in my whole day, in terms of recycling, in terms of not using the energy, I'm not wasting energy in terms of many other things. But really healing the planet, it didn't happen, because at the moment, we start again, we started faster, because knew we need to recover all that time that we lost. So it goes faster, and you can see it in the different things happen in the planet since then no in terms of economically. So I now know, it didn't heal. But I think that I'm positive in terms of that change of mindset
for some part of the planet. So, you know, Fran, you mentioned that in climate trade, you also monitor different organizations about how they are performing. Yeah. Over the years, have you started to see an improvement in top management's about climate change problems. Of course, this has changed radically. I mean, especially in Europe, there are regulations that are asking the companies to report every year about sustainability, like the listed companies pretty much do all around the world. And there is also regulations that are
coming to the countries regarding the investments, when you go to a bank, they ask you, if you want your fund to be sustainable. And there are ratings on all the companies, there are software's that make the rating, so every or asset manager now is using or is starting to use a rating for the companies that he's analyzing in order to include in his portfolio. So that's super important, and that's a change that is gonna make, it's gonna pay. And at
the end, we will go more and more and more on that on that part. I even say that, then I'm positive on that, that every quarter as we look the results of the companies, we will look more to the ESG results than to the monetary results of a company, it is important for a company to make more money every quarter. Well, I don't know. I mean, Warren Buffett doesn't think so, he knows a little bit about this. And I mean, I think our company has to do,
well, obviously has to give money back to the shareholders, but they cannot do and we can jump over ESG indicators. And that's going to get more weight every time. Interesting. So my next question to you is that, you know, the younger generation in our world, the millennials, and the Gen Z's, are already very conscious about climate change. And they're also very conscious about buying products from companies, which are conscious about climate change. Based on all the work that you do, how can each one of us make our service more accountable, and protect our planet? Totally agree with you. I mean, consumers are not consumers anymore, are prosumers. So we determined what our brand at the end we'll be doing, because of our consumer behaviors, and the young generations have it in the DNA, you know, so that, which is something I'm very happy for.
At least we did something well in terms of that change. And like, in terms of what we can do, I mean, at the end, first thing is learning. I mean, we need to learn about how things work in terms of how the balances work and what the pain we are doing with behaviors you have we have daily., I mean, it is better to I mean, obviously, everybody now is acknowledging that they have to buy renewable power for their houses and is the first thing that people is doing and it's not still massive, but many people is calling the electric power and say, hey, I want my power to be a green. I don't have Okay, I'll move
to another company. So that's things that we can do even with small companies paid on rapid. And then obviously recycle. Don't throw waste anywhere you go. I mean, we see beaches, we see all areas of the sea that are full of garbage now and then do things that we are today, behaving like buying plastics out of things that today I was talking to my wife this morning and say we were eating pineapple and say, Hey, why are we buying packaged pineapple? Why are not we buying a pineapple, carrot and then putting it in something so it doesn't get oxidated. But I recycle the plastic when it comes to pineapple. Yeah, but still, you're building that plastic. So we have to be more rational about all the process of the things that we do during the day. What a great example. Thank you. So let's talk a little bit about ClimateCoin.
You know, you're the co founder of climate coin, and your currencies are, you know, shaking the entire world. Tell me a little bit about climate coin. And what was the background? Very happy to do that. I mean the background is for you to see the picture. I was a banker for 15 years. At the same time, I created my first company when I was 16 years old. So my passion was there, still. And so I been in one of the leading technology banks in the world and working for as I said, as a regional manager at some point. And I became one of the early let's say, not experienced, but acknowledges of a blockchain the European Union at the very beginning with a Bitcoin and so I started to get technology is one of my passions, technology innovations and all that. So
I saw a huge strength coming in 2016 about climate, and like, you know, that stand for speech about Steve Jobs, putting the dots together, it happened. It happened because my daughter was coming. My one of the people that was working with me in the bank, that is my partner, Pedro, from the very beginning, his daughter was coming at the same age, it was like, two months difference. And we say, we got to do something. And we say, Okay, why don't we put apply technology to climate? And let's bring innovations and let's fund that innovation to say, why don't we create a climate coin? So we registered the climate coin worldwide, the brand, and we started to work to marketize that. But the reality was that the world was not ready yet for that. It was too early. Even we have some inconveniences with
let's say, regulators and wanting to be asked to be regulated and all that, it was too early, there was the things were not regulated as they are today. So from that we learn a lot in terms of what we had to do then with the climate trade when the companies wanted, they didn't want to work with a token, was too early also. So what we did is we we said okay, let's stop it a little bit. And let's come back whenever the world is ready. So climate coin is relaunching on April this year. So now, pretty much
everyone knows, as in the climate space, we know pretty much everyone in the climate space also. And we have surround ourselves from the biggest professionals in the climate world, which is, for example, the CEO is going to be Pedro Ramon, which is one of the influential leaders my partner from the beginning and together with him, he's going to be one of the most important persons in the financial climate space today, who is leaving his position to become the CEO of ClimateCoin. So that will be announced at the end of February. And we will be launching what is called Green Climate Dao, you can check it in greenclimatedao.com or in climatecoin.com. And it will be relaunched in Miami, April 22, Earth Day. And we already have several countries that are
supporting us in order to use climate coin to fund their mitigations, the carbon mitigations. So yeah, very excited of what is coming. My apologies. Go ahead. Climate coin is an asset backed token. So basically, when you buy a climate coin, you buy a carbon credit, you can, let's say, not only invest in that project that you are supporting, but at the same time, like one product that generates carbon credits, you have a carbon grade in your hands, in your cell phone, in your wallet. So you can experiment, the increase in price on carbon, or you can compensate your carbon footprint when you want.
So I have time for one more question. And I want to ask you that. You know, when you're talking about climate trade, you're talking of companies being able to buy and sell carbon credits. Yes. Are you saying that climate coin could become the currency in which organization can trade carbon credits? Basically, we are trying to do, we were working, we have been working for six months with one of the biggest consulting firms in the world in order to developwhat is going to be the strategy paper, the white paper of the company that will be released soon, and what kind of coin and there are different phases of the project in different years, because, as we said, we learn that the world has to be ready for certain things. But yes, I mean, when you hold a climate coin, you hold carbon, and with that carbon, you can do several things.
And one thing is offsetting your organization or your carbon footprint as a citizen. Another thing is, obviously, you want to value the price of carbon whenever it's going up, because we expect to go up the carbon exponentially or you can use it to pave, why not. And how large and this is my last question to you. How large is the market
for carbon credits in the world? It has increased since 2017, fivefold. So five times and at the moment, we are talking about billions of tonnes every year. But I couldn't say exactly the amount, its more than 30 billion today, broadly. Wow. But I couldn't say exactly. Understand. On that note, Fran, thank you so much for speaking to be. Thank you for talking to me about climate trade, about climate coin,
about all the challenges that are being faced by our Earth because of climate and how so many people are working so hard to mitigate the risks of climate change on our earth and what you're doing, to be able to keep most of us sane and on track to make sure that we don't mess up Mother Earth. Thank you again and good luck. Thank you so much for your invitation. It's been a pleasure. Thank you. Thank you for listening to The Brand Called You, videocast and podcast. A platform that brings you
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