- How We’re Financed
- How We Track Carbon Offsets:
- Our Lean Expenses
- Financial Records
Carbon Neutral Indiana (CNI) is a 501c3 nonprofit. One of our values is transparency. We’re building a glass house so that we can grow trust and improve faster. This in turn enables us to increase our positive impact faster.
How We’re Financed
As a non-profit, our community supports our mission financially in two ways:
- Donations. Because we’re a 501c3 non-profit, we can receive standard donations.
- Purchasing carbon offsets. We sell verified climate outcomes as a fundraiser. Girl Scouts sell cookies as a fundraiser, keeping 60-70% of money raised for programs. We keep about 40% and reinvest that to grow, educating more households.
How We Track Carbon Offsets
First carbon neutral households and businesses measure how much carbon pollution they produce each month. Then they buy carbon offsets from us to neutralize these emissions. Finally, we retire those offsets in a public registry.
We fund our programs with donations and by selling verified climate outcomes as a fundraiser. So far, our members have deposited money with us in order to purchase:
After our members make a deposit, we turn around and purchase carbon offsets on their behalf. This way we don’t have to carry inventory, and this improves our cash flow. So far we’ve purchased:
Once we purchase them, the next step is to retire them. This means they are taken out of circulation (and can’t be claimed by others). Retiring a carbon offset is like ripping up a coupon for a haircut. Once you rip it up, nobody else can use that coupon.
Of the tons we’ve purchased, these have been retired from circulation:
And we still need to purchase:
Here’s another way to visualize this process. First our members make a deposit with us. Then we purchase tons on their behalf. Finally those tons are retired from circulation:
When someone retires a carbon offset, a record of that retirement is published in a public database. Click the links in the ‘Retirement Date And Public Record’ column to view the retirement records:
Our Lean Expenses
We do not pay rent or mortgage on a building, and our single staff member is still an independent contractor without benefits. Our largest expenses are:
- 1 full-time staff. Income similar to high school teacher.
- $300-$500/mo in software subscriptions. For example, website, email newsletter, and CRM.
We’ve existed since April 2020. Here are our financial records:
2020 – We started as a project of a larger non-profit called Indiana Forest Alliance. They are the largest statewide nonprofit protecting Indiana’s forests, and they’ve been doing this for over 25 years. They provided legal and accounting infrastructure in exchange for 5% of our income. You can find their Form 990s back to 2009 on ProPublica. Here is the one for 2020.
2021 – In 2021 we were still part of Indiana Forest Alliance. Here is their Form 990 for 2021.
2022 – In 2022, we were part of Indiana Forest Alliance until Oct 3, 2022. That’s when we became an independent 501c3 nonprofit. Here is our exemption letter from the IRS.
Going forward, we’ll make our Form 990s available here. Soon we will also pay a third party accounting firm to prepare compiled financial statements for us. We’ll share those here soon too.
For more information, contact our Executive Director or Treasurer.