Why Climate Action is important to Ledgy’s co-founders

As part of the Earth Week 2021, and after participating in the larger Time For Climate Action campaign, we invited Ledgy’s founders to tell us about their thoughts on climate action, both on a personal and a company level.

Ledgy was founded with a clear mission, and part of it is to help drive positive change in the world through entrepreneurship. This impact can be seen in many different ways, but one that is near and dear to our founders is climate action. Here is what they have to say about what it means to them personally and within Ledgy.

Why is taking climate action important to you (personally)?

Ben: I worked in an NGO in the Philippines for a year when I was 20 and saw there how easy rising sea levels would threaten a lot of people. And I have also experienced first-hand how different privileges are distributed globally, putting some countries like Switzerland in a much better position to mitigate the results of climate change. We have to work together on this global challenge for the sake of all living beings on earth.

Timo: Climate action is important to all human beings living on this planet. We’re currently on the path to raising the average temperature by 4 degrees in the next 50 years. Such a rise in temperature is expected to kill almost all people on the planet. Thus, we have already set sails to our own self-extinction and should change course as soon as possible.

Can you give us an example of something you have done personally to take climate action?

Yoko: Personally, I am mindful of not flying unless absolutely necessary. Furthermore I am mindful of my eating habits: Mostly vegetarian/vegan.

Ben: As an example, I take the train when I go to Berlin, instead of flying. I actually now really enjoy the 8 hours on the train, where I can focus well and am pretty creative. And my food is mostly vegan.

Timo: I am constantly encouraging people to reduce the consumption of animal products. Producing food from animals is one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases at the moment. Reducing them is a simple action and comes with a great benefits health and taste! In my shared flat with 4 people, we now live on a quasi-vegan diet for more than a year. And almost every day, we are pleasantly surprised about the interesting taste off all our plants and plant-based products.

What would you encourage others individually, to do for climate action?

Timo: The major shift has to come from politics. We’re still pumping huge amounts of money into carbon-intensive industries. This distorts the market and makes people think that clean technologies are expensive. In fact, they’re often just less subsidized than traditional methods. Thus, on an individual level, the biggest lever is to put pressure on governments to realize the crazy urgency to solve the climate crisis. Joining a climate organization or donating money to one can be an easy first step to change the political course.

Ben: I think there is one most important action: Voting for parties that take climate action seriously. On a large scale that is where the most change can happen the fastest. Besides that, on an individual level, I find it important to take research as the basis and take action starting from where we can have the biggest impact, which for most of us starts with finding alternatives to flying and consuming less meat and dairy. And in these efforts I encourage others to think of it as a process, where the goal is not to be perfect right from the start.

Can you tell us a little bit more about Ledgy’s mission and where climate action comes into play there?

Ben: We democratize ownership to help startups fulfill their mission. I believe that a lot of positive change is pushed forward by young dynamic companies. Big ones have a hard time changing. Startups can set examples, and by being successful demonstrate that change is possible. There are more and more startups now directly tackling the climate crisis. With Ledgy we will enable them to attract the best people, make them owners of their shared vision, and thus propel them towards making the change they set out to make.

Yoko: At Ledgy we democratize ownership in startups because we believe that it empowers teams to better achieve their company’s mission together. We are not only proud to be supporting our customers whose mission is related to reducing CO2 emissions, by offering a discount on our product but also take climate actions internally as a company, such as by being part of the TFCA campaign.

Timo: Although we’re not a company that directly tackles the climate crisis, we’re trying to support other companies that do so. We’re also trying to be a role-model as a low-carbon company ourselves.

What do you think is the hardest part about founding a company and keeping climate action in mind?

Timo: Keeping climate action a priority. As a founder, you’re constantly overwhelmed with critical things that require almost immediate action. It’s often not easy to keep the habit of doing the occasional climate action and contributing to the survival of humanity.

Yoko: There are always many things to do in a startup and really allocating the required time to take climate action is a challenge—but an important one to tackle.

What are you excited about with Ledgy and its impact on the climate?

Yoko: The opportunity to not only have a positive impact by living climate action within Ledgy itself but also being able to act as multiplier by helping our customers (startups) to achieve their own impact.

Ben: It makes me excited to see what we can build when we join forces, and the reach this achieves, which would not be possible alone. With our call for climate action as part of the earth week campaign, we had an audience of around a thousand founders, employees, and investors, who were online on Ledgy in the last week, amazing! And it makes me excited about the future, as we’re expecting to onboard a lot more startups in the coming months.

Timo: The larger we grow, the more resources we have to directly invest into climate action. Right now, these are little, but in a few years we might become a major driver in having a positive impact on our society and earth’s climate.

What would your advice be for fellow founders and companies to make sure they are taking climate action?

Timo: Inform yourself about how critical the situation already is. We only have a couple of years left to drastically reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. Once that’s clear, it’s quite difficult NOT to do any climate action.

Yoko: My advice: Make someone from your team the dedicated responsible for the topic of climate action in your company. This will hold you as a founder accountable to take action and prioritize the topic.

Why do you think now is the time for climate action?

Ben: I believe that climate change, or more broadly a sustainable way for so many humans to live on earth, with manageable side-effects, is the challenge of our generation. We grew from less than two billion humans only 120 years ago to now almost eight, and are projected to saturate somewhere around 11. We haven’t done enough so far, and it’s really urgent now to reform our economy and social norms so this equation will work out.

Yoko: This line is not from me, but I could not put it better: Because we’re late already.

We just wrapped up Earth Week and our first participation in a campaign around this topic, what are your thoughts on this type of action? What are your hopes for future actions Ledgy can partake in?

Yoko: I’m very proud of how our team, led by our climate officer Karime Andere, came together to build this campaign during earth week. The Ledgy campaign ended up being recognized among big campaigns such as Spotify’s, Flixbus’ or Personio’s by the TFCA organization, which I think is a big achievement for a 17-people company!

Ben: I would like us to do a proper ESG assessment to see how we’re doing ourselves and where we can improve. Walk the talk. And I would like to leverage the platform for companies, that we have, to in some way or another help others take action as well.

Timo: Our participation is Earth Week was a cool entry point into climate action. My hope is that future actions will become much larger and that we’ll be able to allocate a lot more resources to the topic.

Seems like exciting times are ahead for Ledgy, indeed! Thanks a lot to Ben, Yoko, and Timo for sharing your thoughts. The Ledgy team is super excited to be working towards these goals and overall mission with you.

Stay tuned for more from our team on topics we are passionate about, and make sure to go to our page on the Time For Climate Action campaign as part of Earth Week 2021 for more on how to take climate action as a company or as an individual!

29 Apr 2021