Does this mean rotten credit?

When you think about, it’s one of those things that had to happen before the millennium. Hot on the heels of the announcement that an American bank had introduced a credit card with a built-in magnifying glass (the better to see those exorbitant bills in badly-lit restaurants, according to movie star Jack Nicholson, who is credited with the idea), Canada Trust has introduced the first biodegradable credit cards in Canada.

The Canada Trust "Friends of the Environment Foundation" Regular and Gold MasterCard cards are made of a plant-based substance called Biopol that looks, feels and works like any other plastic credit card. Tests have shown that the biodegradable card is as durable as one made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), the substance used for most credit cards.

Unlike PVC credit cards, the Biopol credit cards break down in the presence of soil, moisture or salt water in just a few months. The Biopol cards can also be conventionally recycled or cleanly incinerated. Canada Trust will donate a percentage of the total annual amount that customers spend using these cards to the Friends of the Environment Foundation Canada Fund. The fund has already contributed more th $13 million in support of more than 7,400 environmental projects across Canada.

Another great idea whose time has come, and an admirable gesture by a corporate citizen. Of course, credit junkies who bury their card in the back yard to curb spending may end up with a rotten credit rating and card.