Accelerate Financial Technologies intends to plant thousands of trees for every investment made in their upcoming Bitcoin exchange-traded fund.
The Calgary-based investment services firm has vowed to plant 3,450 trees for every $1 million CAD — around $792,000 at the time of publication — invested in its Bitcoin (BTC) exchange-traded fund, or ETF.
The move is part of Accelerate’s goal of making its Bitcoin ETF carbon negative, which means it will remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than the energy necessary for Bitcoin mining and transactions. According to the corporation, each large investment will result in the offset of 1,000 tons of carbon dioxide.
Accelerate chief investment officer Julian Klymochko rebuffed the notion that the company’s approach was akin to greenwashing, or deceptively portraying oneself as environmentally good. He stated that the company decided to plant trees rather than purchase carbon credits in order to designate the product as carbon negative.
Ninepoint Partners LP intends to create a green Bitcoin ETF that appears to be comparable to Accelerate’s proposal. In May, the business announced that it would buy carbon credits to offset the environmental impact of the cryptocurrency in its fund.
Given the concerns about the technology’s potential environmental impact, many organizations in the crypto and blockchain field, including mining firms, have proposed solutions that use green or renewable energy sources. According to Bank of America researchers, Bitcoin’s energy consumption has climbed 200 percent since 2019 and is now similar to that of a small developed country. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, has also expressed concern over the network’s “increasingly rapid use of fossil fuels.”
In February, the investment firm filed an application with Canadian securities regulators for its Bitcoin ETF. Accelerate intends to float the product on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker ABTC, with units available in both US and Canadian currency.
While the Securities and Exchange Commission has yet to approve a crypto ETF in the United States, Canadian regulators have approved numerous firms seeking Bitcoin and Ether ETFs in 2021, including offerings from investment fund manager 3iQ, Purpose Investments, Evolve Funds Group, and CI Global Asset Management.