Apple Broadens Restore Fund to Support Carbon Removal

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by KnowESG,

Apple Inc.

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Image courtesy of Apple

Apple has unveiled a significant expansion of its Restore Fund, which will now see the company double its overall investment in projects that promote top-notch, nature-based carbon removal initiatives.

The Restore Fund was initially introduced in 2021 with a pledge of up to $200 million in collaboration with Conservation International and Goldman Sachs. It is now expanding, thanks to a new fund that includes fresh investments from Apple along with a new collection of projects aimed at removing carbon.

The purpose behind the establishment of the Restore Fund by Apple was to motivate worldwide investment in safeguarding and reinstating vital ecosystems as well as expanding natural carbon removal solutions. This strategy also assists in tackling the remaining emissions that businesses cannot yet decrease or avoid using existing technology.

Apple is set to invest up to $200 million in the new fund to expand the Restore Fund. Climate Asset Management, which is a joint venture between HSBC Asset Management and Pollination, will oversee this new fund. The portfolio of new projects aims to remove 1 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide every year at its peak while providing investors with a financial return. By participating in the fund, Apple's suppliers will have a unique opportunity to include high-impact carbon removal projects in their efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives, stated, "The Restore Fund is a pioneering investment strategy that produces tangible, quantifiable benefits for the environment while also aiming to provide a financial return. Achieving a carbon-neutral economy necessitates significant decarbonisation combined with responsible carbon removal, and innovations such as this can help hasten the pace of advancement."

Apple and Climate Asset Management are adopting a comprehensive approach to potential projects by combining two types of investments. The first is nature-forward agricultural projects that earn revenue through sustainable farming practices, while the second type consists of initiatives that conserve and restore vital ecosystems, which eliminate and store carbon from the air.

This innovative blended fund structure is designed to deliver both financial and climate benefits to investors while also promoting a fresh model for carbon removal that more fully harnesses the global potential of nature-based solutions. All investments made through the Restore Fund will adhere to strict social and environmental standards.

Having already achieved carbon neutrality for its corporate operations, Apple urged its suppliers to achieve carbon neutrality across all Apple-related activities, including all direct and electricity-related emissions (referred to as Scope 1 and Scope 2, respectively), by 2030.

High-quality carbon removals will assist in reaching this objective by offsetting any unavoidable or unreduced direct emissions. Initially, suppliers are expected to decrease emissions by transitioning to renewable energy, increasing energy efficiency, and mitigating direct emissions. In early April, Apple announced that over 250 manufacturing partners have committed to powering their Apple production with 100% renewable energy by 2030.

Apple's initial three investments, in partnership with Conservation International and Goldman Sachs, are located in Brazil and Paraguay. These investments aim to revive 150,000 acres of sustainably certified working forests and preserve an additional 100,000 acres of native forests, grasslands, and wetlands.

By 2025, these projects are expected to eliminate 1 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year. Carbon removal is critical to addressing climate change and achieving global climate targets, as emphasised by prominent scientific bodies such as the IPCC.

Apple is using cutting-edge remote sensing technologies, such as Space Intelligence’s Carbon and Habitat Mapper, Upstream Tech’s Lens platform, and Maxar's high-resolution satellite imagery, to monitor and measure the impact of Restore Fund projects accurately.

These technologies will create detailed habitat and forest carbon maps of the project areas to ensure that they meet Apple's high standards before investment and quantify and verify their carbon removal impact over time. Additionally, Apple is exploring the potential of using the LiDAR Scanner on iPhone to enhance monitoring capabilities on the ground.

The Restore Fund is a crucial element of the company's comprehensive plan to achieve carbon neutrality for its entire supply chain and product life cycle by 2030. As part of this plan, Apple aims to reduce 75% of all emissions by 2030 and offset the remaining emissions with high-quality carbon removal initiatives such as the ones supported by the Restore Fund.

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Source: Apple

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