South Pole is a provider of climate solutions and sustainable project development services intended to serve businesses, public entities, trusts, foundations, and NGOs. The company helps its clients develop de-carbonization strategies across sectors and industries, based on an understanding of climate risks and opportunities. South Pole's expertise covers climate change-related topics, including forests and land use, water, sustainable cities and buildings, renewable energy, and energy efficiency.
South Pole offers a variety of climate action projects intended to deliver measurable benefits for ecosystems, communities, and the related economies. The organization says the measurable benefits delivered through the climate action projects are aligned with the sustainability aims of the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. These projects include forest and natural ecosystem protection and restoration, regenerative agriculture, urban tree planting, and delivering renewable energy resources to remote areas.
Besides climate action projects, South Pole offers other sustainability solutions aimed towards helping companies and other organizations reduce or offset emissions:
- Carbon credits, which can be purchased through South Pole
- Renewable energy projects, which can either give an organization a chance to develop renewable energy sources in an area, or can develop renewable energy sources for their offices or locations to reduce the company's or organization's emissions
- Sustainability consulting, which works to support business and public bodies to improve overall sustainability performance and related solutions, including what the company calls customized consulting services to develop specific plans to meet an organization's goals or needs
- Funds and platforms and other related financial instruments, which a company or organization can invest in to help achieve sustainable development goals
- Sustainable finance solutions, which are solutions tailored to the financial services sector and a low-carbon economy
- Geospatial solutions, which work to integrate Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing (RS), and artificial intelligence into projects to benefit the projects and the people supporting them
- Investments in biodiversity, which allow companies and communities to invest in services to restore and protect biodiversity
South Pole offers climate impact funds, which are intended to be financial products and investment opportunities to help finance climate actions at scale. Through investments pooled from companies, governments, and philanthropists, investors co-finance projects and companies generating what South Pole calls a quantifiable, positive climate impact. These investment opportunities are not for profit and, as such, do not work to generate financial returns. Instead, the climate impact funds work to generate environmental commodities, such as carbon credits, alongside measurable environmental and social benefits.
South Pole was founded in 2006 with the intended goal of helping develop and implement decarbonization strategies that turn climate action into long-term business opportunities for Fortune 500 companies and other organizations globally. The company has developed decarbonization projects, finance tools, climate neutral APIs, and carbon offset solutions to help clients reach carbon mitigation and net zero goals. In early 2021, South Pole says the organization has worked with over 1,000 clients and has developed 1,000 offset projects across twenty global offices.
South Pole was originally started as a spin-off from ETH Zurich as the non-profit 'myclimate' and has since rebranded to South Pole, from South Pole Group, in January 2018, in order to reflect the growing scope of services South Pole provides beyond emissions reduction project development. These additional services include advisory on sustainability risks and opportunities and climate strategy.
In 2017, South Pole acquired Climate Friendly, previously a majority-owned subsidiary of South Pole and an Australia-based carbon offset and renewable energy provider. The acquisition saw the immediate integration of Climate Friendly's Carbon and Renewable business into South Pole, with the aim to further develop South Pole's global presence and market position. Renat Heuberger, CEO of South Pole, said of the acquisition:
South Pole Group's acquisition of Climate Friendly's successful domestic and international Carbon and Renewables unit advances our mission of providing and promoting sustainable solutions and services on a global scale to benefit commerce and communities alike. By combining Climate Friendly's expertise and market position with South Pole Group's premium suite of solutions, we can reinforce our offering and ensure competitiveness in the APAC region, as well as in North America.
In August 2020, South Pole was certified as a Certified B Corporation for their work addressing and offsetting climate change impacts.
South Pole - Climate-KIC
South Pole USA, Inc | Certified B Corporation
Sustainable Brands - South Pole
Documentaries, videos and podcasts
Gold Rush to Green Rush: Healing Colombia's rainforests
April 15, 2019
Interview with Renat Heuberger, CEO, South Pole
October 2, 2018
South Pole - the global leader in sustainability solutions
May 23, 2019