Adam Neumann’s Flowcarbon has been forced to halt operations and rollouts of new products amid the current crypto bear market.
The company that stores carbon credits on the blockchain is waiting for the crypto market to stabilize, according to CEO and co-founder Dana Gibber. Flowcarbon issues tokens when companies buy carbon credits, which can be burned when a company wants to retire the credits.
Carbon credits historically have been used to offset the pollution introduced into the atmosphere by big corporations. A project developer will raise funds by selling carbon tokens to a company wishing to offset its carbon footprint. One carbon credit represents one metric ton of carbon that will be removed or prevented from entering the atmosphere. The carbon credit confers the right to claim an offset when a company chooses to retire a credit, forever taking it off the market.
Carbon credits are issued through brokers or purchased directly from project developers.
KlimaDAO AND Toucan Protocol Association began selling tokens linked to carbon credits since Oct. 2021. Tokenization is intended to create a stock market for carbon credits that is liquid, has price transparency, and is accessible. Tokenization unlocks demand. Increased demand puts price pressure on a supply-constrained market, which means pricing increases for credits. This ultimately means more revenue for projects where they can look to expand, and project developers can do more, increasing supply.
Projects holding existing carbon credits can deposit their credits in Flowcarbon’s registry account, a database type. A one-to-one representation of every carbon credit is minted into GC02 tokens owned by the entity that owned the carbon credits. The company deposits them into a “Goddess of Nature” smart contract representing a “bundle,” an aggregation of carbon credits representing similar established criteria. The company is then issued one Goddess of Nature token for each GC02 token. When a GNT token is retired, one carbon credit at the registry is retired.
New token launch postponed
Flowcarbon had expected to launch a new token by the end of June, a plan which has now been put on hold indefinitely, said Gibber. Toucan and KlimaDAO have announced a suspension of new business following an announcement from a major carbon credit registry Verra that carbon credits on its registry could not be used to create new tokens due to confusion regarding how the tokens would be created. It is studying new ways of creating tokens.
KlimaDAO and Toucan are awaiting the outcome of Verra’s research. They have battened down the hatches, waiting for the crypto winter to pass.
Company did $10M last year, brags founder
Flowcarbon was founded by WeWork founder Adam Neumann and his wife, Rebekah, and raised $70 million in capital from presales of its tokens in May 2022 from Andreessen Horowitz and General Catalyst, amongst others. Rebekah Neumann had shown her interest in environmental issues by purchasing forests near the equator. She had challenged Neumann’s family office team to brainstorm a way to buy forests and generate money simultaneously. The result was Flowcarbon. Neumann claimed to the Financial Times that the company had done $10 million in 2021. Neumann isn’t involved in the day-to-day operations, employees say.
A spokesperson for venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz said that the company invests with a long-term view and is confident regarding the market, despite the delays.
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