Mastercard launches Priceless Planet Coalition, inviting Australian organisations to unite and preserve environment

Mastercard coalition partners to support planting 100 million trees globally, with Australia selected as one of top three forest restoration locations

SYDNEY – October 20, 2020 – Mastercard has announced the launch of the Priceless Planet Coalition in Australia, inviting local organisations to come onboard and take collective action against climate change.

The Priceless Planet Coalition unites the efforts of merchants, banks, cities and consumers to fight climate change through the restoration of 100 million trees over five years – together with forestry experts Conservation International (CI) and World Resources Institute (WRI). Australia has been selected as one of the top three forest restoration locations globally, along with Brazil and Kenya.

“In Australia, through the Priceless Planet Coalition, Mastercard is empowering its network of partners and consumers who share its commitment to being a force for good in the world to unite in action and create exponential impact for the environment. Mastercard welcomes all Australian organisations, big or small, to get involved,” says Richard Wormald, Division President, Australasia, Mastercard.

The Priceless Planet Coalition has welcome new partners – Archa, Associated Bank, Barclays Bank US, BECU, Berkshire Bank, BMO Financial Group, Charity Charge, Davivienda, Doconomy, DZ BANK, E. & J. Gallo Winery, EedenBull, Emirates NBD, Eurobank, Expo 2020 Dubai, Finix, First Hawaiian Bank, Frank Green, Frontier Airlines, Halkbank AD Skopje, Hawaiian Airlines, HSBC, Itaú Unibanco, Network International, Produbanco , SchoolsFirst FCU, Scotiabank, SEFCU, Synchrony, Transcard, WESTbahn, and 1derful – as well as eminent environmental experts as part of the recently announced Advisory Committee. These new partners join existing coalition members American Airlines, bunq, Citibank, L.L. Bean, the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Santander UK.

In Australia, Archa and 1derful have joined the coalition and the Sydney Opera House is looking to support Mastercard in its Priceless Planet efforts.

“Archa aims to provide tangible ways for our customers to offset their carbon emissions through direct contribution – i.e. round-ups on transactions – and donations through the Mastercard platform,” says Oliver Kidd, CEO and Founder of Archa.

“1derful was delighted to be invited to join the Mastercard Priceless Planet Coalition as it presented an active, demonstrable way for us to articulate and evidence our commitment to a truly sustainable future. Rather than just talking about a green future, Priceless Planet is giving truth to the statement ‘actions speak louder than words.’ 1derful is delighted to be part of this global initiative and sees it as integral to who we are and the leadership we want to display in all that we do,” Luke Bunbury, Co-Founder & Deputy CEO, 1derful.

“The Opera House is excited to be working with our major partner Mastercard on exploring ways to support Priceless Planet, a wonderful initiative that underscores the organisations’ shared commitment to the UN Global Goals, in particular taking action on climate change,” says Louise Herron, the Chief Executive Officer of Sydney Opera House.

After the worst bushfire season ravaged Australia over the last year, marked by severe drought followed by heavy rainfall and flash flooding, Wormald says everyone must urgently invest in innovative ways to inspire collective action to address climate change.

“Mastercard believes that by interconnecting its assets and accelerating industry-wide innovations, everyone can make a bigger impact than if each one acted alone,” says Wormald.

New Advisory Committee

A newly appointed Advisory Committee will support the development of the Priceless Planet Coalition’s work. These world-renowned climate experts will use the latest scientific research and data to ensure that the Priceless Planet Coalition makes the greatest positive impact on both the climate globally and on local communities. The Advisory Committee welcomes Bo Lidegaard, Danish historian and diplomat, who has led international negotiations on climate change and is the former editor-in-chief of the Danish newspaper Politiken; Todd Stern, former Special Envoy for Climate Change and the U.S.’s chief negotiator for the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement; and Izabella Teixeira, Former Minister of the Environment for Brazil and co-chair of the UN’s International Resource Panel (IRP).

Inspiring more sustainable lifestyle choices

Core to the Priceless Planet Coalition’s mission is empowering and inspiring consumers to take action against climate change. Mastercard continues to develop environmentally conscious solutions that enable more people to embrace a sustainable lifestyle through their spending choices.

  • A collaboration with the Swedish fintech startup Doconomy enables people to track, understand and take accountability of their environmental footprint through digital tools that set a new standard for purpose-driven payment solutions.
  • For people interested in contributing to reforestation projects and other environmental causes, Mastercard donation platform and soon-to-be-available mobile app enable direct donations to the reforestation partners of the Priceless Planet Coalition and roundup everyday purchases. Mastercard also offers a widget, a web API that can facilitate banks and merchants to enable cardholder donations in diverse points of the consumer journey.
  • Mastercard is also embedding the coalition into loyalty programs run on behalf of issuers and merchants. For example, the company will enable cardholders to redeem reward points for trees through their gift catalogue and in real time through Mastercard Pay with Rewards.
  • To enable issuers to offer cards made from more sustainable materials, Mastercard recently launched the Sustainable Materials Directory, encouraging wider adoption of certified eco-friendly solutions. Mastercard has approved 34 different sustainable card products to date, which have been issued by more than 60 financial institutions. Mastercard continues to target the reduction of first-use polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and to research alternative materials for cards, including recyclable, bio-sourced and biodegradable material in collaboration with leading vendors through its leadership of the Greener Payments Partnership (GPP).

Australia in top three global forest restoration locations

The Priceless Planet Coalition aims to reinforce a restoration model that’s not only focused on planting trees, but on re-growing forests in geographies with the greatest need and most potential for a positive climate, community and biodiversity impact.

Guided by the expertise of our forest restoration partners, Conservation International and World Resources Institute, and our new Advisory Committee, the Coalition has employed rigorous science-based best practices to identify three restoration locations for the coming year in Australia, Kenya and Brazil. Beyond these initial projects, the project portfolio will be expanded to include other locations that meet established criteria.

Mastercard’s own environmental footprint

Earlier this year, Mastercard was the first in the payments industry to receive approval from the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) for an updated emissions target, which aligns to a 1.5-degree Celsius climate trajectory. The company also joined RE100, formalizing a commitment to continue using 100% renewable energy across all of its global operations.

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