UK announces certification standard for forest carbon storage projects
The UK government has announced new scheme to assess the carbon captured and stored by forest projects initiated for carbon sequestration. The new standard called Woodland Carbon Code is a voluntary standard that would provide certification to forest projects for the carbon capture and stored. This code would help businesses promote these projects as a credible source of carbon mitigation.
The code is developed by industry stakeholders and aims at improving transparency in reporting and verification of carbon capture and storage by these projects. Businesses planning to set up forest projects can submit their projects to the Forest Commission which would then validate the carbon capture and storage potential of the project as claimed by the proponent.
After the registration of the project with the Forest Commission, the amount of carbon sequestered will be verified every five years. This would be done through the submission of a carbon report which measures the tonnes of carbon emissions 'retired' by the project. The data will then be certified by independent reviewers (Forest Commission). Once certified, the information would be added to a national database. The certification would help the project owners to sell carbon credits against the certified 'retired' emissions.
So far 11 projects have been submitted for validation under this code. These projects have a combined carbon sequestration potential of over 258,000 tonnes. The duration of these projects range between 25 to 100 years. The projects cover an area of almost 450 hectares.