During the past few weeks the Hariyali team has been lucky enough to wrangle a series of meetings with prominant members of Seattle’s carbon-finance and non-profit communities! We were first able to arrange a Skype call with April Allderdice, CEO of Micro Energy Credits (MEC), a Seattle based carbon credits aggregator. Through this conversation Andy and Bill, the two team members focused on carbon strategy, were able to gain additional insight into the workings of a carbon credit aggregator, and how such an organization could assist another organization such as SEWA. Although April was unable to give us specific information regarding individual agreements she was able to describe how a typical agreement is structured. Essentially MEC will agree to purchase credits generated by a project, such as Hariyali, and negotiate the resale of the credits on the open market, maintaining a cut of the revenues as a service fee. They provide additional services as well. During the early stages of a project they will provide one of their employees as an assistant to handle day-to-day operations as well as train local staff to eventually take over these roles. Although it comes at a price MEC makes a compelling case as to how their expertise may prove beneficial to a program such as the Hariyali Project.
Our second meeting was with Greg Zwisler, a Senior Commercialization Associate at PATH, a Seattle-based non-profit committed to global health initiatives. This meeting was especially valuable to Devon and Ben, as PATH has a great deal of experience in process strategy and measurement of social metrics. Greg had most recently been involved in projects designed to distribute water filtration systems to rural inhabitants in Southeast Asia. Although there are significant differences between the projects that he has been involved in and the Hariyali Project he was able to give us some great insight regarding the challenges associated with working without a formal distribution network as well as gathering survey information from a population that may be largely illiterate. After the meeting we were treated to a tour of the facilities and shown some of the products they are currently testing and preparing for distribution. We have a third meeting coming up this week, with another employee at PATH and have come a long way towards refining our deliverables and are feeling confident that we will have good material to present to SEWA when the project reaches its conclusion!