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Forest Carbon

“Forests provide numerous essential services that need to be preserved and managed for future generations”.


Forests are a vital part of the carbon cycle and provide sequestration of atmospheric carbon through photosynthesis and storage in woody biomass of trees that can be harvested and processed into wood products resulting in extending the storage life based on the durability of the product.  A critical key to this equation is sustainability of forest management to replace the carbon within the harvest cycle versus the current situation of forest degradation and conversion to non-forest use.  A prime example is Indonesia where the loss of carbon through conversion of forests to oil palm especially in peat forests has resulted in the country being the world’s 7th largest emitter of CO2 behind China & USA.

Deforestation and poor forest management is a critical component in accelerating carbon emissions as well as causing continual destruction and loss of habitat for endangered species.  GFS understands the importance of forests which provides numerous essential services such as photosynthesis, carbon storage, watershed, bio-diversity, medicines, habitat for wildlife, soil conservation and many more.

The international community has recognized the importance of forestry and the role it plays in the carbon cycle that includes sequestration and capture of atmospheric carbon.  There is an increased movement around the world to establish Forest Carbon projects under the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and other Voluntary standards such as the Global Conservation Standard and the Climate, Community and Biodiversity (CBB) to preserve and enhance forest carbon and associated forest services.

Objectives of the Forest Carbon Services:

Global Forestry Services (GFS) Forest Carbon Services is designed to facilitate carbon capture and preservation through reduced impact logging and sustainable forest management as well as through forest rehabilitation projects that can be used to offset carbon emissions.  Forest Carbon Services was developed in response to the need for professional support the development of carbon forestry projects to offset the global decline of forests and support Carbon Neutrality.

Forest Carbon Services can be integrated with the GFS Forestry Support and Investment Services to bring together investors and forest management companies in establishing viable carbon forestry projects.   Projects can then be certified according to international standards for forest management under FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) and certified carbon credits under the VCS and  CCB standards.

Project Establishment and Methodology

The GFS Forest Carbon Services consists of 4 key phases coordinated with the needs of the client, which corresponds to the demands of the World Carbon market.

Phase 1: Project Scope Identification

The initial step in establishment of a carbon forestry project is to carry out a preliminary evaluation of identified sites in regards to viability for generating Certified Emission Reductions (CERs); Verified Emission Reductions (VERs) or Conservation Credit Units (CCU) under the desired standards and systems. Some of the criteria GFS have identified as critical to the inception step are as follows:

Project Identification

  • Defining the scope of the project (VCS / CDM or Global Conservation Standard) according to the needs of the client;
  • Identification of potential sites for carbon forestry projects
  • Conduct preliminary site visit to confirm scope and project boundaries relative to requirements for additionality & leakage.
  • Preliminary identification of social elements relevant to project development

Project Potential

  • Review of procedures, management plans and associated documents for the selected area;
  • Review of forest resource data, permanent sample plot data for stand growth.
  • Evaluation of social issues associated with each of the selected sites
  • Objectively evaluate the project’s potential to reach validation for CER’s / VER’s or CCUs for the selected area;
  • Evaluate the project type in respect to Avoided Deforestation & Degradation (ADD) and/or Improved Forest Management (IFM)
  • Preliminary evaluation of the potential revenue based on current available data
  • Development of a Project Inception Report that describes the project scope; site boundaries and key issues related to compliance against the carbon systems;

Phase 2: Due Diligence

The main objective of project due diligence is to understand and mitigate project risks. Whether those risks are financialenvironmental or legal, GFS believes that a step-wise approach is key in defining a realistic and feasible Carbon Forestry Project. GFS has the experience to bring forest projects to life and the expertise to obtain the financial benefits through realistic project expectations.

Project Pre-feasibility will be designed to further evaluate the fundamental benefits and costs based on anticipated eligible project activities and estimated carbon stocks.  Pre-Feasibility study will include:

  • Confirmation of project site, definition of eligible project activities within the project and project activity boundaries, and preliminary estimates carbon stock in above ground and blow ground biomass.
  • Evaluation of the potential carbon offsets in the existing forests in relation to VCS, GCS Standards.
  • Estimation of general costs for key sectors including: project development; validation; verification and implementation.
  • Drafting of a Project Identification Note (PIN)

Due Diligence studies reduces risk to the project meeting the objectives of generating projected carbon credits that can be traded. Project due diligence bridges the gap between environmental uncertainties and financial risk and also covers the legal aspects of the project. Understanding the current environmental, social and legal risks that can create leakages and impact the project must be mitigated.

GFS will support the client to conduct the due diligence in regards to identification of potential adverse risks related to the potential carbon project.  This includes various aspects such as security of land tenure, government policies, rental agreements, suspensions, breaches, obligations, social attributes such as encroachment and environmental obligations.

Phase 3: Project Development

GFS will support the development of the management system to establish a carbon capture or avoided deforestation project that will generate carbon credits that can be certified (registered) to offset carbon emissions or traded in the market.  GFS will support the establishment of a forestry project to generate carbon credits in conjunction with the GFS Forestry Support Program to provide a stepwise system for forestry certification that will provide credibility of the Forestry Carbon project.

GFS provides many activities as part of the technical support for project development and implementation under the combination of the Forestry Support and Forest Carbon Services:

  • Review and finalize the scheduled Action Plan for project development and implementation
  • Evaluation and confirmation of the carbon project scope
  • Evaluation and projections of net carbon gain during project life span
  • Confirmation and minimization of potential leakages within forest management unit
  • Carbon development plan (Project Identification Note) & submission to relevant agencies
  • Development Forest Management Plan for the proposed carbon project
  • Development of Standard Operating Procedures for all forestry activities
  • Fire Management Plan
  • Monitoring system for operations and net carbon generation
  • Project Design Document (PDD) preparation and submission to relevant bodies

Submission of project for validation / verification for carbon credit issuance

Phase 4: Project Validation & Verification

The target goal of the FCS is Validation & Verification to the selected standard (VCS / CDM or GCS) to register the project for issuance of carbon credits (VCU/CCU/Compliance). The forest management company will need to select an accredited certification body to validate project design and conduct a verification assessment.

GFS will support the organization through the process of Validation and Verification:

  • Project monitoring,
  • Continued technical support as needed to complete project validation / verification.

 Forest management Units may contain multiple carbon projects based on long term forest management planning and annual planning for forest rehabilitation, silviculture and conservation that will define specific carbon projects within a forest by project area and by year.  GFS can support the organization to monitor each project site and area in regards to implementation and maintenance.

Following certification process, the GFS can continue to provide technical support for monitoring of annual carbon production / preservation within the site based on permanent sample plots to annually measure carbon credits generated by the project relevant to the baseline scenario.