Stefan, what led to myclimate launching in Germany with you as Managing Director 10 years ago?
I was ready for a change in career and read on the internet that myclimate was looking to start a German subsidiary. I phoned up Zurich and enquired about the situation. Their answer: "All we're missing is the right person." Shortly after, I headed to Zurich, spoke with the then Managing Director and established a business plan for Germany during the following months. After this was accepted by the myclimate foundation board, nothing more could stand in the way of the opening in October 2009.
In addition to offsetting, myclimate offers a wide range of climate protection solutions in Switzerland, such as climate education, carbon footprint calculations and project developments. How do things work in Germany?
In Germany too, we offer services in these three core myclimate areas and position ourselves in the same way as in Switzerland, as THE climate protection partner for businesses with a holistic advisory approach.
What experience has made the biggest impression on you over the last ten years?
Definitely the 2015 Climate Conference in Paris! Shortly before this, a brutal terrorist attack had occurred in the Bataclan theatre. We walked past hundreds of metres of flowers and wreaths. At the same time, there was an unbelievable dynamic at the climate conference, an agreement was on the cards, the confidence and excitement that was growing day by day was almost tangible and finally the breakthrough came in the form of the Paris Agreement!
myclimate Germany has grown a lot in the past year. What is the reason behind this and how will you continue this trend?
It's incredible. In 2019, we went from six to 16 employees. Our revenue has doubled that of the previous year. One reason for this is definitely that climate protection has gone mainstream in the German media. This has encouraged many to take active responsibility for climate protection and compensate for their unavoidable CO₂ emissions through high quality carbon offset projects. This applies to both businesses and individuals. I see enormous potential for the year ahead. And, if we are being honest, we must all set much higher ambitions when it comes to climate protection. Otherwise we won't come close to the goal of a less than 2 degree increase in global temperature. We at myclimate Germany want to contribute as much as we possibly can to this goal.