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Apple creates sweeping carbon removal fund

Fri 16 Apr 2021

Apple has today announced its Restore Fund — a broad forestry initiative aimed at removing carbon from the atmosphere while generating a financial return for investors.

The US$200 million fund has set its goal to remove ’at least one million metric tons of carbon dioxide annually from the atmosphere’ — equivalent to the amount of fuel used by over 200,000 passenger vehicles.

The fund is set to become a centrepiece of the tech giant’s goal to become carbon neutral across its entire value chain by 2030. 

While the company will directly eliminate 75% of its supply chain and products emissions by 2030, the fund will help address the remaining 25% of Apple’s emissions by removing carbon from the atmosphere. 

“Nature provides some of the best tools to remove carbon from the atmosphere,” says Apple vice president of environment, policy, and social initiatives Lisa Jackson. 

“Forests, wetlands, and grasslands draw carbon from the atmosphere and store it away permanently in their soils, roots, and branches. Through creating a fund that generates both a financial return as well as real and measurable carbon impacts, we aim to drive broader change in the future — encouraging investment in carbon removal around the globe. 

“Our hope is that others share our goals and contribute their resources to support and protect critical ecosystems.”

Apple says the Restore Fund will be guided by international standards set by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the UN Climate Convention, while prioritising investments in forests that improve biodiversity by creating buffer zones and natural set-asides.

The fund has backing from Conservation International, while Goldman Sachs will manage the fund. Apple says the three parties will identify new projects later this year.

“Innovation is core to Apple’s approach to climate solutions, and Goldman Sachs is proud to partner with them and Conservation International,” says Goldman Sachs global head of sustainability and inclusive growth Dina Powell.

“We all agree that the urgency of climate transition requires private capital to work alongside new and established efforts aimed at sustainably removing carbon from the atmosphere with rigour and high standards. 

“We believe launching this fund can catalyse significant additional investment capital for climate impact.”

This is not the first time Apple has worked with Conservation International — the companies have collaborated in the past collaborated on projects aimed at restoring grasslands, wetlands, and forests.

“Investing in nature can remove carbon far more effectively — and much sooner — than any other current technology,” says Conservation International CEO M. Sanjayan.

“As the world faces the global threat climate change presents, we need innovative new approaches that can dramatically reduce emissions. 

“We are excited to build on our long-standing partnership with Apple and believe the groundbreaking approach with the Restore Fund will make a huge difference and benefit communities around the world with new jobs and revenue that support everything from education to healthcare.”

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