The world’s first ever carbon credits from an Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU) project developed under Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS) criteria were verified and issued this week into the VCS registry system. The credits, from the Uchindile-Mapanda reforestation project developed by Green Resources in Tanzania, are exclusively available to clients of The CarbonNeutral Company.
The Uchindile-Mapanda project, based in the Southern Highlands of Tanzania, was developed using VCS carbon accounting criteria and the social and biodiversity standards of the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA), providing a guarantee of quality, credibility and permanence to the use of forestry in the carbon markets. Developed using an approved CDM methodology providing technical integrity, it is the world’s first project to issue credits using a VCS buffer mechanism to address the risk of non-permanence and give an essential guarantee of delivery. Forty percent of the credits issued were set aside in a special buffer account.
Jonathan Shopley, Managing Director, The CarbonNeutral Company explained, “Due to the commitment of VCS in establishing a rigorous verification process and standard, businesses that are committing to significant carbon reductions can now achieve this by purchasing and retiring high quality, verified VCS AFOLU forestry carbon credits. This credible, permanent offsetting development is a historic milestone for us, for our clients, for the carbon marketplace and for forestry.”
David Antonioli, Chief Executive Officer, Voluntary Carbon Standard Association, said, “This is a major watershed for all forest carbon projects worldwide, especially because it illustrates how one can ensure permanence from land-based projects. The VCS buffer requirement ensures that forestry carbon credits are permanent, high quality emission reductions, – and as a result is helping stimulate increasing interest in forestry projects as an effective means to mitigate climate change. ”
“The issuance of carbon credits for sustainable forests in Africa is a significant step forward to encourage project developers to make the investment required in reforestation. We are very proud of this project which provides substantial community benefits through the support of local schools, and provision of employment opportunities and infrastructure developments,” said Mads Asprem, Founder & Managing Director, Green Resources.