Today carbon is considered a dirty word; consigned to dirt, dust, something that’s in the air, something that is dark. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Taking many forms, from diamonds to exhalation of CO2 as a gas, carbon can be used for good. And that’s the idea behind Carbon Productivity.

Carbon shouldn’t be a dirty word

As we struggle with climate catastrophe, this remarkable group is focused on how to make better use of the carbon that we can still burn, by reimagining carbon as an opportunity rather than a liability.

The brainchild of Covestro and a consortium led by our Project Breakthrough partners Volans, we’re happy to be part of their ongoing journey – spotlighting the epic potential of the king of the elements and the brilliant minds beavering away to regenerate the planet’s increasingly “wobbly carbon cycle”.

AtlasVideo ► Peek inside their first Basecamp, which brought together 80 leaders from across the globe.

You can see why #ReimagineCarbon ‘trended’ on Twitter that day! (Apparently that’s a good thing.)

The one-day event featured Covestro Chief Sustainability Officer Richard Northcote, who talked about how carbon is going to save us. Covestro are the high-tech material guys behind the ultralight carbon fibre used in Solar Impulse – that plane that flied the whole way around the world using only the sun as fuel. Pretty damn fly… right?

Around the world on sunrays

Around the world on sunrays

Paul Hawken gave a powerful keynote introducing Project Drawdown – the most audacious plan ever proposed to reverse global warming with 100 actionable solutions that make a meaningful dent in greenhouse gases – from reforestation to light bulb technology to educating girls.

“Carbon is the element that collaborates and holds hands. It will go to a party and if it’s good it will stay there, and if it’s not, it will go to another,” he analogised. “It has been demonised as an element. Double glazing the planet with CO2 is not bad, even when it’s up there it’s an angel. What needs to be addressed is what we do down here.”

Also taking to the stage was carpet tile company Interface’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Erin Meezan, who explained their new project Climate Take Back – which goes beyond reducing negative impact to reverse global warming. We’re fans of their plush path to sustainability.

Video interviews with Paul, Erin and others coming soon.


The carpet reversing climate change



Watch ► our videos on Carbon Productivity.

Join ► the conversation using #ReimagineCarbon.

Explore ► the Carbon Productivity Map.

Main photo: Shutterstock/Vanatchanan