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Protecting the climate with a sustainability assistant for mobile phones - Zurich develops “Planet Hero” app with support from adesso

Dortmund/Cologne | 21. September 2021

Everyone can support our planet – by taking small steps to better protect the environment. Zurich Group Germany’s new “Planet Hero” app, which is available from today in all app stores, shows how this is possible. Anyone who wants to live more sustainably can receive useful ideas every day from the app on how to become a “climate champion” among their friends and family. adesso is responsible for the technical side.

Climate change is currently the biggest global challenge facing humanity, with effects that can now be seen everywhere in dramatic extreme weather events. It is time for an appeal to each individual to do more to protect the climate. As a daily companion, Zurich’s new app aims to contribute to tackling the challenges of our time, thereby expanding the insurer’s commitment to sustainability to its digital channels.

With the support of the IT service provider and mobile business expert adesso, Zurich has developed an app that intends to motivate people to behave more sustainably, but does so in an entertaining manner and without finger-pointing. Users are given important information on environmental and climate-related topics. The main purpose of the app is to provide valuable daily ideas and tips on how to better protect the environment by making small behavioural changes in everyday life. In addition to being shown how to reduce their personal carbon footprint, users can collect “motivation points” in order to become a “Planet Hero”. For example, they are asked whether they avoided fruit with plastic packaging during their shopping trip, or whether they put up energy-saving LEDs with motion sensors on their house. There are so many examples of how each individual can make a difference in their environment.


"Planet Hero" app supports sustainable, ecological behaviour (Source: Zurich Group Germany)

The new “Planet Hero” app aims to help insurer Zurich towards its goal of “becoming one of the world’s most responsible and sustainable companies”, as Monika Schulze, Head of Customer and Innovation Management at Zurich, describes the firm’s motivation. To achieve this, the insurance group also wants to stimulate public debate on sustainability and climate action and be a pioneer in implementing climate targets. For example, the company was the first insurer to commit to meeting the 1.5-degree limit on global warming and is systematically aligning its corporate strategy with this pledge.

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“This target still appears too abstract to many people. They ask themselves what specific contribution they can personally make to better protecting the environment and the climate in their everyday lives,” Schulze says. “People are unsure what actual effects their own behaviour will have on the climate. Why should I avoid products containing palm oil, and what can I personally do to reduce microplastic in the oceans?” The “Planet Hero” app helps users with all these questions and shows them how to become “Planet Heroes” and gradually take a more sustainable approach to their everyday lives. Daily “challenges” are designed to motivate the app’s users to avoid plastic bags and to wash clothes in an environmentally friendly manner while helping them apply this knowledge in day-to-day life. They can measure the results of their behavioural changes by using the carbon footprint calculator in the app. With each challenge, they collect points to earn badges and rewards. An overview shows users which goals they have achieved.

In the “Hero Projects” section of the app, users can also learn more about other exciting initiatives launched by the Zurich Group, such as the reforestation of the Brazilian rainforest (“Zurich Forest”) or the “Planet Hero Award”, which Zurich presents to the best and most effective projects for improving climate action.

Stefan Riedel, Executive Board member at adesso, believes that his company’s partnership with Zurich fits superbly with adesso’s own strategy: “The ‘Planet Hero’ app is your personal climate coach guiding you step by step to a more ecologically aware lifestyle. adesso also supports customers such as Zurich along the entire value chain as part of its own sustainability strategy. As a forward-looking company, we are continuously optimising our carbon footprint – with the goal of operating both sustainably and successfully as a business and offering our customers ‘green’ services in a credible manner.”

Stefan Riedel, Member of the Executive Board at adesso (Source: adesso SE)

The new “Planet Hero” app is available to download for free from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. The download link and further information are available at: https://www.zurich.de/de-de/services/apps/planet-hero-app

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