Renat Heuberger is a pioneer and serial social entrepreneur in the field of sustainability, climate change, and renewable energies, where he has been engaged since 1999. As co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, he has overseen the growth of South Pole from a start-up to a globally leading climate finance platform. Renat serves as a member of the Expert Network of the World Economic Forum, acts as Innovation Council for the Swiss government, acts as an angel investor in several impact-driven start-ups, and holds numerous board roles. Renat holds a master’s degree in environmental sciences from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and has completed executive education programs at INSEAD and the Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). Renat is a regular blogger, opinion leader, and keynote speaker at high-level events on climate action and sustainability.
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- For-profit Social Enterprise
- Climate Change; Sustainable Development; Entrepreneurship
- Areas of Impact
- Europe, Latin America, Africa, Latin America, South Asia, Greater China
South Pole Group
South Pole, a social enterprise, is a leading sustainability company. It enables corporates, capital markets and the public sector to mitigate climate risks and to invest in a low-carbon future. South Pole uses a systemic approach to accelerating the transition to a sustainable and climate-smart economy.
Its approach consists of five levers: understanding climate risks, scaling climate opportunities, pricing carbon and other externalities, mobilizing finance, and verifying impacts. With its project development arm, South Pole has thus far enabled over 500 emissions-reduction projects in over 30 countries, including in key sectors such as renewables, forestry, agriculture, industry, and urban climate mitigation and adaptation. Among its biggest successes are large, clean cookstove, eco-friendly hydropower, and water purification programmes, which have changed the lives of millions of people.
South Pole leverages international carbon markets to increase access to finance for those programmes and local communities, and thereby helps deliver local impact aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals. Currently, over 1,000 corporate and government clients work with South Pole to deliver climate impacts in line with their emissions-reduction targets. With its digital transformation and advisory arm, South Pole has developed a number of IT-applications to measure and manage sustainability impacts. Tools include apps to assess the climate risks of investments, deforestation risks in supply chains, and automated air quality measurement using mobile phone data. With its fund advisory and programme management arm, South Pole has facilitated investments in clean technologies and renewable energy, and managed programmes for climate-smart cities.
South Pole has launched other innovative products, such as the Climate Credit Card, which enables consumers to make climate-neutral purchases and offset purchases with investments in emissions-reduction projects. Another South Pole innovation is the “carbon screener," an application on the Bloomberg Terminal that allows investors and asset managers to calculate the carbon footprint of every investable company around the world. South Pole has also launched Gold Power, the first global renewable energy label. Founded in 2006 and headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, South Pole operates offices in 15 countries.