This week the Co-op Bank launched a new credit card called “think”, which offers a lower rate of interest for designated ethical purchases via a link-up with partners including Ikea, cosmetics firm Lush, green electricity company Ecotricity, bikes giant Raleigh and fair trade organisation Traidcraft.
The first time the card is used, the bank will arrange for half an acre of Brazilian rainforest to be bought and protected in the customer’s name. Also, for every £100 spent on the card, 25p will be donated to the charity Cool Earth, which protects rainforests.
In the US there are “affinity” cards where donations in the range of 0.25 – 0.75% of spending go to the charity (or whatever) the individual wants to support.
Of course there’s also Working Assets but their credit card program is run by FIA, who are formerly MNBA—associated or owned or the same thing as the massive and depressingly willing to squeeze the last drop of air from your dying throat, Bank of America. Which isn’t really a friendly happy company.
After looking at some comparison websites and so on, there don’t yet seem to be ethics-slanted credit cards on the US market. So what’s left? Cash rewards and donations to charities of choice? Give it up and just go for the airline miles? Hmm.