CO2-currency "ECO" as ecological basic income

a fair and social alternative to CO2-tax


you get the sum of all CO2 emissions of a product displayed and being able to directly identify the more climate-friendly product by its CO2 footprint.



that there is a separate

emissions price tag for this purpose 

and that you pay this price

in the CO2 currency "ECO".


that everyone on earth receives this currency in the same amount as a monthly ecological basic income and that you can trade this quota. 


What if we could use this to ensure that the climate target is met - reliably, socially and fairly! 

The ECO uses your power as a consumer and thus puts the control potential for climate protection in the hands of all citizens.

» The concept of the ECO climate currency is compelling

and could spur new economic thinking to address the climate crisis. 

The general idea of the Personal Carbon Budget is also a socio-politically progressive approach

because it makes the individual a decisive actor in global affairs.

Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber

former director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and long-standing member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 

» This model defines the necessary ecological guard rails

within which every citizen can can autonomously decide on his consumption.

It is an instrument of freedom within clearly defined limits for all.

The effect of this alternative climate concept is that each of us is not only part of the problem,

but also becomes a crucial part of the solution.  

Prof. Dr. Ernst Ulrich v. Weizsäcker

environmental scientist, politician,

honorary president of the Club of Rome and the World Future Council


Cap, Personalize and Trade

 Master plan for a system change in climate policy  

 Climate change is one of the greatest challenges we currently face as a society. But the measures taken by policymakers so far are not enough. Emissions are rising year by year and have never been higher than they are today. We believe that the gigantic problems facing us are systemic, and that this task must therefore be approached systemically - namely, thinking big. This is the only way to achieve the necessary "giant leap" through which we might still be able to avert the worst.


That is why we have developed a climate concept that could initially be introduced within the EU and as many willing states as possible. Its border adjustments could cause many other countries to join such a resource currency union. Cap, Personalize and Trade is a reliable and equitable model to adequately address global warming and the limits of our planet - on the same scale as the problem itself.  

Responsibility for future generations

 We  all  consume  -  the  associated  consumption  of  fossil  fuels  is  increasingly   exceeding  the   planet's

    regeneration limits.  Bringing  people  and  nature into harmony is therefore probably the greatest task of

      this  century.  However,  our  consumption  can  only  be  reduced quantitatively to a limited and very

      limited extent.  Savings  potentials  and  the possibilities to reduce CO2 emissions through voluntary

     renunciation are limited and by far not sufficient enough. Certainly, most people recognize the dangers

    of climate change and also the need  for action.  But when  this leads to  personal restrictions, acceptance

  and willingness to participate is reduced. At the same time, it is especially important  to take responsibility for future generations now. However, the issue of climate change should not be about guilt. Guilt in the sense of "... your consumption is worse than my consumption ...". No one should feel attacked. After all, we all live within this system design that enabled the current state of our environment.

Personal CO2e budgets for all

The  solution  can  therefore  only be to make the manufacturing processes for our consumption generally greener and more climate-friendly, rather than relying on voluntary individual renunciation or small-scale savings  measures.  This  is  already  technically  possible.  So  far it  has  failed due to economic efficiency, because fossil fuels are simply too cheap.  The consequential costs of using them,  such as dealing with the effects of climate change, have not yet been priced in-a serious system error at the expense of our children. However,  making  consumption more  expensive,  such as through the new CO2 tax,  does not automatically mean  significantly  lower  emissions  as  a consequence. That's why we need a billing model that works more reliably  and  fairly  while  still  respecting  the  planet's  limits.  The principle  Cap,  Personalize  and  Trade - tradable, personal emissions budgets as a basic ecological income - allows each thing to be priced out with a

separate emissions price tag, giving our consumption a realistic and transparent climate price. The effect of this whole-of-society solution  is that through a limited personal  budget  of a carbon  resource currency,  we call it ECO (Earth Carbon Obligation), our demand will change quite automatically towards greener products. Through sensible limiting and rationing, consumers themselves will therefore exert the necessary pressure for change on industry and its manufacturing processes.

Gamechanger in climate policy

              The  responsibility  for  climate  protection  is thus  returned  to  EACH  individual citizen,  fairly and

               according to  the polluter  pays principle.  And  this  with a maximum of personal freedom of choice

              and  transparency.  Because  ALL costs of our  ecological footprint  become visible through the ECO.

            People can now  assign a price to the  CO2 equivalent of their consumption,  in addition  to the  economic

          value.   This  corresponds exactly to the  carbon resources consumed,  along the entire production process.

       There is no mixing of  monetary  price  and   resource price.  Justice is a  strong  basic need  of  almost every

    human being.  And we all have an equal right to emit a  certain amount of CO2Paying out identical personal

  emission quotas fulfills this need and enables consumption that takes into account the finite nature of the atmosphere and guarantees compliance with scientifically defined emission limits. This concept brings about  transnational  climate  justice  at  all  social  levels,  and  can  thus  contribute  to  a  socio-ecological

                                       transformation of our society and economy.

» You never change things

by fighting the existing reality.

To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete."

Buckminster Fuller


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source: Mercator Institut Berlin | translation: Martin Auer, Scientists for Future Austria

This page was translated with the help of DeepL