Agroforestry in REDD+: Opportunities and Challenges

Agroforestry and other tree-based systems (wood lots, afforestation) can contribute to REDD+ in two ways: 1) as part of REDD+ under certain forest definitions;  and/or 2) as part of a strategy for achieving REDD+ in landscapes. In the context of REDD+, agroforestry has the potential for reducing degradation by supplying timber and fuelwood that would otherwise be sourced from adjacent or distant forests. In fact, agroforestry has been used in several protected area landscape buffer zones and within conservation as one way of alleviating pressure on forests, thereby reducing deforestation. However, enabling market infrastructure, policies on tree rights and ownership and safeguards would be necessary for agroforestry and other tree-based systems in the landscape to effectively contribute to the goals of REDD+ and Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs).

Download brief here

Drivers and consequences of tropical forest transitions: options to bypass land degradation?

The early studies of the ASB Partnership for the Tropical Forest Margins stratified the domain for study into stages of a generic transition pathway that suggested a strongly non-linear trajectory of change. In this scheme, a phase of degradation of above-ground vegetation, based on over-logging or shortening fallow cycles in intensified swiddens can lead to a grass-fire cycle that needs special conditions to allow successful rehabilitation. Many places with current agroforestry and tree mosaics have gone through such a phase. A new review of the global literature on these ‘forest transitions’ by Meyfroidt and Lambin (2011) framed important conclusions.

Land use trajectories that avoid a low tree-cover phase and ‘bypass’ the high emission stages are often targeted in REDD+ policies; examples exist in transitions of swiddens to agroforests rather than intensive annual cropping systems degrading into grasslands with frequent fire. Changes in land tenure regime are often key to change in tree cover.

Download brief here

Building Forest Carbon Projects (Step-by-Step Overview and Guide)

Forest projects around the world are working to confront the practical challenges of reducing emissions and providing local benefits. To facilitate the development of forest projects, we have compiled strategic step-by–step guidance to emerging best practices. Drawing on the experience of the Katoomba Incubator, this series of documents helps project developers understand key technical, social, environmental, and financial issues and points the way to key tools and guidance. Composed of nine volumes, the Building Forest Carbon Projects series is best accessed first through the Step-by-Step Overview and Guide, which outlines the key steps in the project development cycle. This overview is complemented by the eight guidance documents that constitute the meat of the series, with each exploring in detail one critical aspect of forest carbon project development.


  • REDD Guidance: Technical Project Design
  • AR Guidance: Technical Project Design
  • Carbon Stock Assessment Guidance: Inventory and Monitoring Procedures
  • Community Engagement Guidance: Good Practice for Forest Carbon Projects
  • Legal Guidance: Legal and Contractual Aspects of Forest Carbon Projects
  • Business Guidance: Forest Carbon Marketing and Finance
  • Social Impacts Guidance: Key Assessment Issues for Forest Carbon Projects
  • Biodiversity Impacts Guidance: Key Assessment Issues for Forest Carbon Projects

Download the publication here.

Navigating Wetland Mitigation Markets

While the use of ecosystem services markets is increasingly discussed as a policy option to protect ecological functions that benefit society, there is limited publicly available information regarding the risks associated with investing in, operating in, and regulating, such markets. In this paper we outline the risks faced both by entrepreneurs who sponsor wetland mitigation banks-the most mature ecosystem services market in the US-and the regulators who oversee them. To identify these risks, as well as their potential mitigants or other strategies to navigate them, we rely upon existing literature and interviews conducted with industry participants, including entrepreneurs, regulators, and consultants. This paper seeks to provide a consolidated list of risks that may help to inform investors due diligence processes and their understanding of wetland mitigation banking as a real asset, and may serve as a reference for entrepreneurs and regulators who are new to wetland mitigation banking or other more nascent ecosystem services markets featuring similar risks.

State of Watershed Payments 2012: Executive Summary for Business

 This report benchmarks companies taking a landscape-scale approach to water risk – looking beyond  direct operations to the larger watershed context.  Business leaders from Coca-Cola to SABMiller to  Sony are experimenting with natural infrastructure  investments that address many of the operational  risks at the top of their lists – including supply disruptions  and emerging regulations – while saving money,  increasing resilience to climate and natural disaster  shocks, and improving relations with local communities.  These efforts are known as investments in  watershed services (“IWS”).

This executive summary is developed specifically for a business audience, building upon data and analysis first  presented in a more comprehensive report from Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace on the topic of  watershed investments –  Charting New Waters: State of Watershed Payments 2012. In  Charting New Waters,  we track the size, scope, and outlook for investments in watershed services and in the ecological infrastructure  from which they flow.

State of Watershed Payments 2012: Executive Summary for Business

 This report benchmarks companies taking a landscape-scale approach to water risk – looking beyond  direct operations to the larger watershed context.  Business leaders from Coca-Cola to SABMiller to  Sony are experimenting with natural infrastructure  investments that address many of the operational  risks at the top of their lists – including supply disruptions  and emerging regulations – while saving money,  increasing resilience to climate and natural disaster  shocks, and improving relations with local communities.  These efforts are known as investments in  watershed services (“IWS”).

This executive summary is developed specifically for a business audience, building upon data and analysis first  presented in a more comprehensive report from Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace on the topic of  watershed investments –  Charting New Waters: State of Watershed Payments 2012. In  Charting New Waters,  we track the size, scope, and outlook for investments in watershed services and in the ecological infrastructure  from which they flow.

Increasing Participation In Incentive
Programs For Biodiversity Conservation

Engaging private landowners in conservation activities for imperiled species is critical to maintaining and enhancing biodiversity. Market-based approaches can incentivize conservation behaviors on private lands by shifting the benefit–cost ratio of engaging in activities that result in net conservation benefits for target species. In the United States and elsewhere, voluntary conservation agreements with financial incentives are becoming an increasingly common strategy. While the influence of program design and delivery of voluntary conservation programs is often overlooked, these aspects are critical to achieving the necessary participation to attain landscape-scale outcomes. Using a sample of family forest landowners in the southeast United States, we show how preferences for participation in a conservation program to protect an at-risk species, the gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus), are related to program structure, delivery, and perceived efficacy. Landowners were most sensitive to programs that are highly controlling, require permanent conservation easements, and put landowners at risk for future regulation. Programs designed with greater levels of compensation and that support landowners’ autonomy to make land management decisions can increase participation and increase landowner acceptance of program components that are generally unfavorable, like long-term contracts and permanent easements. There is an inherent trade-off between maximizing participation and maximizing the conservation benefits when designing a conservation incentive program. For conservation programs targeting private lands to achieve landscape-level benefits, they must attract a critical level of participation that creates a connected mosaic of conservation benefits. Yet, programs with attributes that strive to maximize conservation benefits within a single agreement (and reduce risks of failure) are likely to have lower participation, and thus lower landscape benefits. Achieving levels of landowner participation in conservation agreement programs that deliver lasting, landscape-level benefits requires careful attention not only to how the program structure influences potential conservation benefits, but also how it influences landowners and their potential to participate.

Charting New Waters

 The number of initiatives that protect and restore forests, wetlands, and other water-rich ecosystems has nearly doubled in just four years as governments urgently seek sustainable alternatives to costly industrial infrastructure, according to a new report from Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace.

“Whether you need to save water-starved China from economic ruin or protect drinking water for New York City, investing in natural resources is emerging as the most cost-efficient and effective way to secure clean water and recharge our dangerously depleted streams and aquifers,” said Michael Jenkins, Forest Trends President and CEO. “80 percent of the world is now facing significant threats to water security. We are witnessing the early stages of a global response that could transform the way we value and manage the world’s watersheds.”
The report, State of Watershed Payments 2012, is the second installment of the most comprehensive inventory to date of initiatives around the world that are paying individuals and communities to revive or preserve water-friendly features of the landscape. Such features include wetlands, streams, and forests that can capture, filter, and store freshwater.

Collecting the Drops: Toward Creative Water Strategies

“Connecting the Drops: Toward Creative Water Strategies” includes a suite of learning modules, case studies, and resources to help businesses develop sound water strategies. The toolkit offers guidance in assessing water use and impacts, identifying risks and opportunties, and developing systems for tracking and managing water resource management. “Connecting the Drops: Toward Creative Water Strategies” also includes a comprehensive overview of the business case for water sustainability.

Collecting the Drops: A Water Sustainability Planner

“Collecting the Drops: A Water Sustainability Planner” is a set of tools developed by the Global Environmental Management Initiative (GEMI) to help businesses assess their water use and impacts, and better understand how water resources management can affect “license to operate.” The toolkit will be especially useful to facilities staff and/or a business’ operating division, and includes training modules on water use and impacts and water management risk assessment, impact calculators, and case examples.

Green Values Stormwater Management Calculator

This tool allow users to make hydrological and financial comparisons between conventional stormwater management strategies and green interventions.?Users can input site statistics, and a range of green infrastructure interventions to see outcomes in both hydrological (discharge and peak discharge by lot and site levels, total detention size requirements, and average annual discharge) and financial (life cycle costs, first-year site construction and maintenance costs, and benefits over a 100-year life cycle, by lot and in total) terms.?

Video Tour of RIBITS Wetland Bank Information Site

The tour goes thorough what information can be found on the site, and should be helpful for someone who is already familiar with wetland mitigation banking, but hasn’t explored the RIBITS site. Enjoy!
For the video tutorial click here!

Ecosystem Service Market Development: The Role and Opportunity for Finance

Executive Summary
Intact ecosystems on rural lands provide critical services to residents of Oregon and other regions. These services include but are not limited to regulation of climate through carbon sequestration, provision of clean freshwater for cities and towns, support of fisheries that sustain us, and preservation of intact, wild landscapes of great spiritual and recreational value. Historically, these services have been available for free as landowners do not receive payments for the value they provide through sustainable management. Typically, they were noticed only when reduced or eliminated. Perceiving their loss as a failure of a market economy to provide for the common good, environmental economists advocated for payments for ecosystem services as a way to align economic incentives with land and water stewardship. The creation of tradable credits for the development or preservation of ecosystem services has emerged as a method to provide such payments. These credits are financial assets that can be sold to fund landowners’ investment in stewardship projects. Earning a financial return for good environmental stewardship of property holds the promise of simultaneously protecting the environment and providing economic opportunity in rural areas, thus supporting societal interests in rural sustainability.

Though markets for different types of ecosystem services credits vary, a paucity of transactions in the early stages of market development is a challenge. The extreme thinness of markets can be selfreinforcing, with few landowners willing to develop additional credits without strong prospects for a sale. The lack of supply of credits, in turn, leaves potential buyers discouraged. This broad chicken-and-egg dynamic has meant that the potential to harness credit markets to meet environmental goals has been largely unrealized. One potential obstacle to the emergence of markets for these credits is a lack of financing for projects seeking to develop ecosystem services and their credits (hereafter ES projects). The research effort described here seeks to develop innovative financial mechanisms and approaches to meet this need. This report presents findings from research including a theoretical inquiry, interviews with national and international leaders in ES finance, and the proceedings of a workshop entitled Enhancing Rural Sustainability: Financial Tools for Ecosystem Services Transactions…

Conservation Almanac

The Conservation Almanac covers land area conservation activity across the United States from 1998-2005. The project grew out of the many requests The Trust for Public Land has received for data to understand the “context” for land conservation and the growing conservation finance movement. Elected officials, journalists, foundations and others want to know things like: * How much land has been protected in my state? * Which state and federal agencies have protected lands in the state? * With all the new money being created for land conservation, what kind of impact are we getting? * What policies and programs might help us make progress in reaching our conservation objectives? In the process of developing the Conservation Almanac, TPL has gathered data from hundreds of primary information sources and made every attempt to be accurate, comprehensive and thorough in our research. Given the scale and complexity of this undertaking, we are releasing the Almanac as a “work in progress” with the expectation that there will be opportunities for future improvement and updates. Please email us at if you have any questions or suggestions. What Elements are Included? 1. Total acres for each state, and acres that have been conserved within the state as of December 31, 2005; 2. Land conservation activity, both acres acquired (fee title and conservation easement) and dollars spent from 1998 through 2005 (Please refer to Methodology for a detailed explanation of our data calculations); 3. A detailed listing of LandVote conservation finance ballot measures; 4. A profile of the state’s land conservation programs; and 5. A discussion of the state’s policy framework that underpins land conservation. The Conservation Almanac includes a data analysis tool enabling the user to examine the underlying data and to generate custom reports for individual or multiple states. Specifically, the Conservation Almanac includes state achievements in land conservation-both overall and in the 1998 to 2005 time period-by relevant state agencies. To view State program and agency descriptions please navigate by state. Finally, there are several federal programs for land conservation that are not included in this iteration of the Conservation Almanac for reasons that include: 1. Data not in existence during the snapshot time period 2. Lack of reliable data 3. Not funded during the snapshot period. As the Conservation Almanac continues to develop and data collection across the country standardizes, efforts will be made to include data absent from this version. To understand the federal programs and agencies included in the Conservation Almanac please view the Federal program and agency descriptions.


Our Goal: To inspire and inform collaborative place-based conservation in the U.S. by increasing the pace and effectiveness of land-protection investments in every state. LandScope America — a collaborative project of NatureServe and the National Geographic Society — is a new online resource for the land-protection community and the public. Planned for release in fall 2008, LandScope America will bring together maps, data, photography and information about our environment from a variety of sources and present them in dynamic and accessible formats. That NatureServe and the National Geographic Society have partnered to develop this resource is no coincidence. NatureServe fulfills its clear mission — to provide the scientific basis for effective conservation action — by sharing the information developed by a network of member programs that contains nearly 1,000 conservation experts and field scientists in every state. Since 1888, the National Geographic Society has traveled the Earth and shared amazing stories with each new generation, inspiring people to care about the planet. Together, the two organizations are leveraging their respective strengths to help others dramatically increase the pace and effectiveness of conservation in the United States. About NatureServe NatureServe is a nonprofit conservation group dedicated to providing the scientific basis for effective conservation action. Representing a network of 80 natural heritage programs and conservation data centers in the United States, Canada, and Latin America, NatureServe is a leading source for detailed scientific information about threatened plants, animals, and ecosystems. Visit us online at About National Geographic The National Geographic Society is one of the world’s largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to “increase and diffuse geographic knowledge,” the Society works to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 350 million people worldwide each month through its official journal, National Geographic, and four other magazines; National Geographic Channel; television documentaries; radio programs; films; books; DVDs; maps; and interactive media. National Geographic has funded more than 8,000 scientific research projects and supports an education program combating geographic illiteracy. For more information, visit

Green Power Partnership Webinar: Green Power Markets and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI)

EPA hosted a webinar on October 23 to answer basic questions about how green power retailers can retire allowances through the voluntary renewable energy set-aside (VRE) in many of states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), and the importance of doing so for the green power market. State RGGI Administrators, Tracking System Representatives with APX, EPA officials, and representatives from the Center for Resource Solutions (CRS) provided information and answered questions. Speakers addressed:

* The eligibility criteria for retiring allowances
* The roles of Partners, providers, and regulators
* How and who must apply, and on what time schedule
* Where to go for more information

State of the Voluntary Carbon Market webinar

APX, New Carbon Finance and Ecosystem Marketplace would like to invite you to a complimentary Webinar, The Voluntary Carbon Markets: Current State of Affairs. You may already know that the global voluntary carbon markets continue to experience dramatic growth involving everyone from corporations and project developers to financial services and NGOs. But what’s really going on with these markets and is it time for you to get involved or increase your participation?

This educational event will provide an inside look at some of the latest information on these exciting markets covering topics including:

* Current growth estimates, VER pricing trends, and market predictions
* Emission reduction projects that are creating offsets
* Who is driving demand and why they are buying
* Standards, their role in the markets, utilization, and trends
* Substantiating environmental claims using carbon offsets
* Project offset registries and market infrastructure solutions

David Suzuki Foundation reports the Ontario Greenbelt contributes $2.6 billion to local economy

(Toronto) September 9, 2008
– A new report released today by the David Suzuki Foundation with support from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation has found that Ontario’s Greenbelt contributes $2.6 billion worth of non-market ecological services to the province each year, an average value of $3,487 per hectare.

“This is an incredible figure,” said Dr. David Suzuki, co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation. “It’s a good reminder to decision-makers that if we don’t protect our greenspaces, we’ll end up paying a higher price in the future, not just with our health and the planet’s health, but economically as well. Ontario’s Greenbelt is a world-leading example of how to grow our communities in a balanced way.”

The report, Ontario’s Wealth, Canada’s Future: Appreciating the Value of the Greenbelt’s Eco-Services, quantifies the value of the ecosystem services such as water filtration, flood control, climate stabilization (i.e. carbon storage), waste treatment, wildlife habitat, and clean air.

“This report celebrates the Ontario government’s foresight to protect the Greenbelt and inspires us to embrace its growth,” said Burkhard Mausberg, President of the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation. “The Greenbelt distinguishes Ontario, and Canada, as an environmental innovator.”

“It’s less expensive to preserve the natural environment and the benefits it provide us, than to replace it with a man-made infrastructure. The highest economic value the environment affords us is when it is left undisturbed,” said report author Sara Wilson of Natural Capital Research & Consulting.

Covering more than 1.8 million acres, the Greenbelt was established to safeguard key environmentally sensitive land, watersheds, and farmlands that provide essential ecosystem services and quality of life for this densely populated area of Canada. This protected region includes green space, farmland, communities, forests, wetlands, and watersheds, including habitat for more than one-third of Ontario’s species at risk.

Ontario’s Wealth, Canada’s Future can be downloaded from and


The Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation is a not-for-profit organization created to help foster our Greenbelt’s living countryside by nurturing and supporting activities that preserve its environmental and agricultural integrity.

The David Suzuki Foundation uses science and education to promote solutions that conserve nature and help achieve sustainability within a generation.

Media contact:
Sara Wilson, Principal
Natural Capital Research & Consulting
Cell: (604) 865-1911, sarajwilson -at-

Burkhard Mausberg, President
Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation
Tel: (416) 960-0001 ext. 300, bmausberg -at-

Rachel Plotkin, Biodiversity Policy Analyst
David Suzuki Foundation
Cell: 613-796-7999, rplotkin -at-

Implications of Climate Change for Conservation, Restoration and Management of National Forest Lands

Climate Change and National Forests

Climate change is coming to a national forest near you. How much forests will be altered as a result of climate change largely depends on how much humans reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases and how quickly. The effects of climate change on national forest lands will also depend in part on how forest management responds to these threats.

Climate Change and Forest Ecosystems

Topics explored begin with those relating to forests as ecosystem forests and carbon; forests and climate change; drought, insects, and fire; and soil and water—and continue with those more directly relating to forest management—wood products, thinning, fuels reduction and fire, restoration, and strategies for conserving biological diversity.

Forests Make Important Contributions

Forests will be affected by climate change, but they may also help to mitigate it. Forests influence the rate and extent of climate change by absorbing CO2 from the atmosphere and storing it in wood and soils or by releasing CO2 to the atmosphere. CO2 is released whenever land is converted to nonforest uses or disturbed by logging, burning, or outbreaks of insects and disease. All living forests both absorb and release CO2, and the relative balance between the two processes determines whether a forest is a source or sink of CO2. Forests are not the solution to climate change, but they can make important contributions.

Hidden wealth revealed in Ontario's Greenbelt: The Lake Simcoe Watershed

Toronto, June 26, 2008
– The ecological benefits provided by the Lake Simcoe ecosystem, a vital part of the world’s largest and most diverse Greenbelt, are estimated at close to $1 billion a year, according to a study released today. Lake Simcoe Basin’s Natural Capital: The Value of the Watershed’s Ecosystem Services, examines the goods and services provided by the watershed’s ecosystem. These include carbon storage, water quality, supply and filtration, flood control, waste treatment and clean air—all of which are top-of-mind concerns for Ontarians.

Other activities relying on the health of this watershed are tourism and recreation, clean drinking water and local agriculture, including the Holland Marsh. At a minimum, the total value of these services to Ontario is $975 million annually; over $2,780.00 for each of the 350,000 plus residents in the area. “If the integrity of the watershed is not protected, what’s at stake is the additional cost of replacing the free benefits of these natural features,” said Mike Walters of the Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority.

The study follows hot on the heels of the Lake Simcoe Protection Act (Bill 99/2008) introduced by the provincial government on June 17. Currently, parts of the Lake Simcoe shoreline and watershed are located inside the provincially designated Greenbelt. The Greenbelt Act and Plan in concert with the proposed Lake Simcoe Protection Act and Plan provide mutually reinforcing support: together they can help protect the entire watershed.

The analysis, undertaken by consultant, Sara Wilson, supported by the David Suzuki Foundation and Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority with funding from the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation, found that services provided by the watershed’s forests and wetlands are the most highly valued assets with an estimated annual worth of $319 and $435 million respectively.

“By articulating environmental services in dollars and cents we begin to level the playing field between the economy and the environment, comparing “apples to apples” in order to make educated and balanced decisions,” said Burkhard Mausberg, President of the Greenbelt Foundation. “We all know nature is “good” but how much do we think it is “worth”?

Healthy growth means protecting key natural features given the value of the services they provide. The benefits of integrating the value of nature into decision-making are clear: sustainable urban growth, balanced communities and increased health and quality of life for Ontarians.

“There is an increasing sense of urgency around valuing ecosystem goods and services,” said Rachel Plotkin of the David Suzuki Foundation. “This study is an important contribution to measuring the value of these services. This information can be used to improve land use and growth management decisions.”

Ontario’s Greenbelt is putting its natural capital into action, leading to better, safer, more renewable ways to grow, power, eat, work and live. It is 1.8 million acres of protected land that wraps around the Golden Horseshoe and runs north to the tip of the Bruce Peninsula. It encompasses the Niagara Escarpment, the Oak Ridges Moraine, Rouge Park, some 7,000 farms and hundreds of rural towns and villages. The Greenbelt is vital to the quality of life of Ontarians.

– 30 –

Click here for an online copy of the report, Lake Simcoe Basin’s Natural Capital: The Value of the Watershed’s Ecosystem Services which includes an Executive Summary. It is also available online at and

To request a hardcopy please contact the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation.

For further information please contact:

Burkhard Mausberg, Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation at (416) 960-0001, email: bmausberg -at-

Rachel Plotkin, David Suzuki Foundation at (613) 594-9026, email: rplotkin -at-

Mike Walters, Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority at (905) 895-1281 ext. 234, email: mike.walters -at-

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority's mission is to provide leadership in the restoration and protection of the environmental health and quality of Lake Simcoe and its watershed with our Community, Municipal and other Government partners.

Since 1990, the David Suzuki Foundation has worked to find ways for society to live in balance with the natural world that sustains us. Focusing on four program areas – oceans and sustainable fishing, climate change and clean energy, sustainability, and the Nature Challenge – the Foundation uses science and education to promote solutions that conserve nature and help achieve sustainability within a generation.

The Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation began its work in June 2005 as an independent, charitable foundation with a mandate to promote and sustain our Greenbelt as a beneficial, valuable, and permanent feature, enhancing the quality of life for all residents of Ontario.

Final Compensatory Mitigation Rule

On March 31, 2008, EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) issued revised regulations governing compensatory mitigation for authorized impacts to wetlands, streams, and other waters of the U.S. under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. These regulations are designed to improve the effectiveness of compensatory mitigation to replace lost aquatic resource functions and area, expand public participation in compensatory mitigation decision making, and increase the efficiency and predictability of the mitigation project review process. Links to the final rule and supporting materials can be found below.

Emissions Trading, Carbon Financing and Indigenous People

This is a short guide for Indigenous land managers
and those who work with Indigenous communities
to the phenomenon of climate change,
and to ‘market’ and financial mechanisms for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, often referred
to as the ‘carbon market’, ’emissions trading’
and/or ‘carbon financing’. This guide is intended
as a first edition – it is hoped that future editions will include even more case studies of Indigenous involvement with the carbon market and
will focus on particular geographical regions.

'Making Sense of the Voluntary Carbon Market: A Comparison of Carbon Offset Standards

The report discusses the role of the voluntary carbon offset market. It provides an overview and guide to the most important currently available standards, using the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) as a benchmark. The report compares the standards side-by-side and outlines the most pertinent aspects of each. It also includes a handy one page reference table for a quick comparison of the standards.

Offsetting Emissions: A Business Brief on the Voluntary Carbon Market

The Ecosystem Marketplace (EM) and Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) have
partnered to produce this business brief for companies considering engagement with
voluntary carbon markets. The brief was written by Katherine Hamilton, Emma Stewart,
Ph.D., and Sissel Waage, Ph.D., with contributions from Alexander Rau, Ricardo Bayon
and Amanda Hawn. Please direct comments or questions to Emma Stewart ( or Katherine Hamilton (

Environmental Regulatory Calculations Handbook

Regulatory Calculations Handbook addresses the environmental concerns of individuals by presenting the basic fundamentals of many environmental regulatory topics. Featuring an overview of the history of environmental problems, the current regulatory framework, and problems/solutions of practical problems in the field, this handbook comprehensively brings the potential calculations and information on regulations into one single-source reference.

– provides 500 solved problems, which detail how to calculate the amount of pollutant that a facility is letting go into the environment
– Includes problems and solutions that can stand alone, offering material that develops the reader's understanding of regulatory matters
– Combines information that is otherwise spread-out and difficult to consolidate quickly

Mangroves in the Gulf of California Increase Fishery Yields

This report shows that in the Gulf of California, fisheries landings are positively related to the local abundance of mangroves and, in particular, to the productive area in the mangrove-water fringe that is used as nursery and/or feeding grounds by many commercial species.

Mangroves are disappearing rapidly worldwide despite their well documented biodiversity and the ecosystem services they provide. Failure to link ecological processes and their societal benefits has favored highly destructive agquaculture and tourism developments that threaten mangroves and result in costly “externalities.” Specifically, the potentially irreparable damage to fisheries because of mangrove loss has been belittled and is greatly underestimated.

Mangrove-related fish and crab species account for 32% of the small-scale fisheries landings in the region. The annual economic median value of these fisheries is US $37,500 per hectare previously calculated worldwide for all mangrove services together. The ten-year discounted value of one hectare of fringe is > 300 times the official cost set by Mexican government. The destruction of mangroves has a strong economic impact on local fishing communities and on food production in the region. Our valuation of the services provided by mangroves may prove useful in making appropriate decisions for a more efficient and sustainable use of wetlands.