At Cogo, we’re on a mission to empower hundreds of millions of people and businesses to measure, understand and reduce their carbon footprint. But changing behaviour is no mean feat.
First, we need to understand the barriers people face when taking climate action. And then build impactful products that help people overcome these challenges. That is why we apply a multidisciplinary approach to building our solutions.
Our team, consisting of behavioural scientists, product designers, user researchers and data scientists, conducts research to understand the barriers people face when trying to reduce their environmental impact. These insights then fuel our products and solutions.
Our researchers identified that one of the key barriers to climate action is carbon literacy. Most people are aware of climate change and the need to lower their carbon footprint, but they find carbon emissions difficult to understand, and consequently, they lack the confidence to take climate action.
We're on a mission to change that. We recently introduced a personalised climate actions feature in the NatWest carbon tracker that improves people's carbon literacy and helps close this value-action gap.
Climate actions are essentially activities that an individual can do to reduce their carbon footprint, such as taking more public transport or swapping out beef for plant-based alternatives.
At the basic level, all climate actions start with a general estimate of how much carbon someone could save by adopting them. We use market-specific averages, assessed regularly by our carbon experts, to make these calculations.
The new feature offers more personalised estimates. Carbon savings are calculated for individual transactions, categories, and time periods. So users can understand exactly how their personal spending habits influence their environmental impact. This makes it easier to identify which actions are most impactful. It also enables us to improve the user experience by offering more tailored information. This also results in higher user engagement.
We analyse bank transactions to determine the carbon footprint associated with your transport choices. We use an average amount of fuel purchased per pound to calculate emissions. Similarly, we know the average emissions per pound spent on public transport. We also know how much carbon each method of transport emits for travelling the same distance. Using this information, we can work out savings from using public transport instead of driving.
We calculate the carbon footprint of your diet by using purchasing data. Averages are used since we can’t see exactly what people ordered or bought at the supermarket. Most of the emissions come from producing the different types of food that make up a typical diet. We then adjust the maths to reflect swapping out meat with plant-based alternatives and work out the difference to find carbon savings.
We use banking transactions on clothes to calculate fashion carbon footprints. For this climate action, the new feature calculates how much lower the footprint would have been for the equivalent second-hand purchase.
Equipping people with knowledge about their carbon footprint and potential carbon savings helps improve carbon literacy. Consequently, people are more likely to take positive steps to reduce their carbon footprint.
When thousands or millions of people reduce their impact, it makes a huge collective difference. Our partnership with NatWest has already helped over 334,000 customers better understand their carbon footprint with easy-to-action behavioural changes.
We can’t wait to see how many carbon savings NatWest customers make with the new feature.
If you want to help your customers take meaningful climate action, get in touch. We are the only fintech on the market to offer this innovative feature.