March 25, 2021 | 5 min read
Taking the plastic out of payments
Humankind is polluting our planet’s waterways with plastic at an alarming rate. As much as 37.5 million tons of plastic enters rivers, lakes, and oceans every year. Even if the world’s governments meet the ambitious commitments they have set for themselves, annual plastic emissions could reach 58 million tons by 2030.
We all need to do more. As a leading modern card issuer and, consequently, a significant consumer of plastic, Marqeta is committed to achieving plastic neutrality.
We’re continuing these efforts with a new initiative we are announcing today to offer customers the choice to issue cards made from recycled plastic through our platform. Marqeta is one of the first card issuers on the market to offer the innovative and sustainable choice of recycled cards. This initiative follows on the heels of our partnership with rePurpose Global, a social enterprise with a pioneering plastic recovery platform, to remove 380,000 pounds of ocean-bound plastic from the environment and channel it towards sustainable reuse.
Starting in April 2021, our card fulfillment partner Perfect Plastic Printing will let Marqeta’s customers order physical cards made from 43% recycled material. “Sustainability is important to our customers and to us,” said John Sala, marketing manager at Perfect Plastic Printing. “We take a global perspective when we consider the impact that we have through our products, our facilities, and the materials we use.”
For card program owners, the key benefit of using recycled plastic cards is similar to using any other recycled product. Recycling prolongs the useful life of a material, keeping it out of landfills and incinerators. By recycling one ton of plastic, we can save 7.4 cubic yards of space in a landfill. Furthermore, quality and durability are not sacrificed when using recycled plastic cards, and the incremental production cost is only pennies on the dollar.
A 2” x 3.5” credit card may not seem like a lot of plastic compared to the packaging of groceries or other household items, but it can add up. Ninety payment cards equal one pound of plastic waste. rePurpose Global’s efforts on Marqeta’s behalf will offset the creation of roughly 34 million cards.
“rePurpose Global’s mission is to help people take stock of their plastic footprint and its consequences, offering up solutions to remove and recover as much plastic waste from nature as they use. We’re delighted to see a company of Marqeta’s size and stature tackle this issue head-on,” said Svanika Balasubramanian, co-founder and CEO at rePurpose Global.
“Marqeta is grateful to be able to offer recycled cards and to work with rePurpose,” said Jason Gardner, Marqeta’s founder and CEO. “This planet is our only home. If we don’t act as stewards of our community and our environment, who will?
“Offering recycled cards is one way Marqeta can ‘Pay it forward.’ By helping our customers reduce their plastic footprint, we also reduce our own.”
If you’d like to begin utilizing recycled plastic cards, please reach out to us.