Conservation carbon: A new voluntary market mechanism to protect forests
Addressing deforestation is critical to mitigating climate change, and also has the potential to deliver significant social benefits to local communities and additional environmental co-benefits. Any consideration of forests and deforestation under the UNFCCC or Kyoto Protocol is expected to occur within this framework of emissions and emission reductions calculated against a baseline or reference level of emissions which is likely to be based on historic emission levels. This mechanism is unlikely to create incentives for broader forest conversation. In the absence of a regulatory system that assigns value to the standing forest, we propose a stock-based accounting approach and trading mechanism that recognizes the additional social and environmental benefits of conserving forests; we call this the Conservation Carbon Mechanism.