Start-ups are like children — you can’t really believe how quickly they grow up. This is doubly true when you’re working on climate change, an issue that developed with enormous rapidity in the past year. Our readers and members are the prime force behind TerraPass’ progress, so let’s take a look at where we’ve been and where we’re headed.
- Jan 1: we have three employees, fewer than 2,600 members, and one product: the Road TerraPass.
- Mar 21: the world is saved when we explain how to turn 6 pounds of gasoline into 20 pounds of CO2, still one of our most popular blog posts.
- Mar 23: we wade deep into controversy by taking a stand in the prescriptivism vs. descriptivism grammar wars. (By the way, we’ve largely ditched the slogan.)
- Apr 3: our fourth employee signs on. Most of you know Orrin as the man behind the conservation tips, but in his spare time he’s the operational force behind TerraPass.
- Apr 25: TerraPass announces a partnership with Ford, the culmination of a year-long negotiation. This was a company-defining moment for us, not because it was the biggest deal we signed this year (it wasn’t), but because it forced us to get real. Landing and implementing a deal like this, to say nothing of working with a partner as knowledgeable as Ford, puts you through the paces in a way that no amount of planning or strategizing can.
- May 17: three weeks later, the CEI controversy breaks. Ford is implicated. Wheee!
- Jun 2: An Inconvenient Truth opens. Whether the movie is a cause or reflection of the growing popular awareness of global warming is an issue future historians can debate, but the fact remains that people are willing to shell out $28m to watch Al Gore give a Powerpoint presentation on climate change.
- Jul 11: Product numero dos launches: Flight TerraPass.
- Aug 28: TerraPass announces deal with Expedia. Angels sing.
- Aug 30: California Global Warming Solutions Act passes, placing the world’s 5th-largest economy under carbon regulation.
- Sep 5: Product numero tres: TerraPass Home and Dorm.
- Sep 13: our fifth employee! With Adam Stern’s arrival, the team’s collective experience roughly quintuples.
- Nov 7: the election is quietly perceived to be a watershed event by proponents of action on climate change. So long, Inhofe.
- Today: five employees, over 26,000 members, and three kick-butt products.
It’s been a great year, thanks to all of you. Next week: looking ahead.