How can forest preservation be used as nature-positive climate compensation?
Why use forest preservation as a climate mitigation tool?
Complementing industrial CCS efforts to fight climate change, forest preservation presents a cost efficient, scalable and verifiable solution, with multiple co-benefits such as soil- and water regulation, recreation and human health, and preservation of biodiversity.
Harvest-mature forests are already sequestering CO2, and will continue to do so if allowed to continue to grow. The climate benefits commence the moment the forest would otherwise have been harvested by clearcutting, both by avoided emissions and negative emissions.
Fighting climate crisis requires urgent action, and preserving forests that are imminently planned for harvesting presents a readily available mitigation solution for businesses that want to offset their residual footprints, and at the same time give back to nature.
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Forest can be valued beyond their real estate and timber values by considering their capacities to sequester CO2, regulate soil- and water conditions and preserve biodiversity. Dedicating more forests to these "soft values" will generate high long-term value for generations of forest owners, businesses and the greater society. Fossagrim applies well recognised models for forest carbon pools to valuate the CO2 benefits. In addition, there are potential upsides in increased understanding of carbon processes below ground, and in quantifying the biodiversity effects.
Trees and plants grow by capturing CO2 directly from the air through photosynthesis. A mature forest act as a carbon sink and can, as it slowly develops towards a natural forest, sequester carbon in the ecosystem for thousands of years. On the other hand, harvesting a production forest turns the carbon sink into a net carbon source, even in the long run. Considering the positive climate effect of carbon stored in long-lived wood products and the substitution effect does not make up for the carbon lost during and after clear-cutting.
Our first Norwegian project forests were signed in 2023, and their first year carbon sequestration benefits are funded by businesses from our growing client base. We expect that our present clients will demand significantly more CO2 offset benefits than the existing projects supply, and continue to develop both a supply backlog of forest projects, and a sales pipeline of business funding opportunities. We are always interested in a non-committing chat on forests, climate, biodiversity, business and sustainability mitigation solutions.
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