The Climate Trust and the USDA Partner to Invest in Climate-Smart Forestry Practices
Welcome back to TCT’s Scorcher series. We took a break for the summer, but we’re back with a weekly update on carbon markets and climate finance.
The Climate Trust was recently selected for up to $15 million in funding over the next 5 years to build markets for climate-smart wood products as part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities funding opportunity [1, 2]. Climate-smart agricultural commodities are produced using farming, ranching or forestry practices that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and/or sequester carbon. Five out of the seventy proposals selected in the first round are focused on the forest products sector. The goals of these proposals vary broadly, from integrating climate-smart wood products into design processes, to quantifying the carbon benefit of substituting wood products for fossil fuel-based materials, to broadening access to carbon markets for underserved communities.
TCT’s Traceable Reforestation for America’s Carbon and Timber (TRACT) proposal will help recover the nation’s forest estate to meet our dual demands for wood products and to ensure that forests continue to serve as carbon sinks and reservoirs well into the future. The proposed TRACT program directs funding, planning, and implementation of reforestation and afforestation activities in lands deforested by wildfire in the Western U.S. and degraded agricultural lands in the Southern U.S. Every acre planted and volume of forest products generated will have a quantified and verified climate benefit in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e). TCT believes this program will break ground in producing carbon-positive wood products through climate-smart practices. Leveraging early-stage carbon financing to drive new reforestation initiatives is at the heart of TCT’s proposal. These new forest stands will be verified and monitored using peer-reviewed, registry approved protocols, ultimately producing the countries’ first fully traceable carbon positive wood products. Incorporating the value of carbon into this supply chain will help us achieve the multiple goals of commodity production and climate action.