The following is, as yet, just conjecture. But it’s a REDD+ type thought process I have to cross off against thinking of such certification of carbon sequestration quality groupings as “The Gold Standard” (www.cdmgoldstandard.org).
Forest bonds – issued with sole purpose to offset carbon by establishing new woodland to be managed within new ecosystem criteria to maximize both carbon and social values and, hence, credit value. To be directed at both the obligatory and the voluntary sectors of the still growing if to most people totally counterintuitive and deeply puzzling. Many seem to sense, however, that it’s a cunning “get rich quick” phenomenon. Maybe that’s all it is but, well, there’s plenty of projects out there I could bring in if the financial site really worked.
If these bonds can be seen to rise in value as per total net project worth (NPW) then they become an increasingly sought after asset, although there are other criteria involved, such as a desire to impress some or all of the public.
The NPW can be designated as achieving:
1. Gross carbon fixed by new plantings @ 15T/annum/annum or greater.
2. Labour requirement generated @ X hours/hectare/annum/annum.
3. Microclimatic improvements @ Y hours saved plus Z tonnes topsoil saved etc.
4. Produce harvested as mass/hectare: a. Firewood, b. Building and craft timber, c. Exportable timber, d. Edible produce such as fruits, nuts, leaf, e. Permaculture/forest garden produce, f. New livestock produce could become available (eg Wild Boar!).
5. Drawing in new facilities such as school, community centre, merchandising centre, new housing, craft manufacturing centre.
6. Increased population involved, possibly resettled. If latter then consideration of removal of population stress elsewhere eg migrated camps of refugees.
7. Tourism, visiting the carbon sink and new area of scenic attraction etc
8. Exchange visits – between sites, locally, regionally and internationally.
9. Research facilities for a boom area of monitoring expanded biodiversity and to monitor populations adapting to new opportunities.
10. Biodiversity increases as such would be a very tangible benefit to emerge.
11. Traditional cultural recall into a situation of re-emerged environmental integrity.
Which should surely make them virtuous. How about a Fair Trade type association, too, so’s they are straight way seen as maximally beneficial, new era, climate friendly, sustainable biomes?
Forest Bonds – to be issued by Five Trillion Trees – together, we’ll save the Planet!