The Woodland Carbon Code

wcclogo270_260The launch of thegovernment backed Woodland Carbon Code in July 2011 marked a significant, positive development in UK carbon woodland creation. Forest Carbon were members of the Forestry Commission's Technical Group that developed the Code during 2009 and 2010, and also contributed to the Code's trial phase with two of our existing projects before it went live. Our membership of the Code's Advisory Board is ongoing, in 2012 we completed the trialling and first ever validation of a group scheme, and in 2015 we are trialling the first ever 5 year project verification.

As at the launch of the Code we had developed over 40 carbon woodlands, all meeting the kind of carbon project and UK woodland creation best practice enshrined in the Code. As a consequence we have been able to attain Woodland Carbon Code certification for all of these woodlands.

The Woodland Carbon Code - What it means in practice

The Code offers carbon credit buyers the assurance that each woodland scheme will deliver the benefits that we say it will, and that that woodland represents genuine new planting. There is more about the range of principles concerned in the Code in our pages about Additionality & Permanence , Carbon Calculations , Biodiversity & Environment , and Monitoring.

Compliance with the Code means that buyers can be assured that:

  • ●  that the right trees have been planted, in the right place;
  • ●  the woodlands are responsibly and sustainably managed to the UK Forestry Standard, and are protected in the long term;
  • ●  the carbon capture estimates are project specific, based on sound science, and risk adjusted;
  • ●  the woodland has been independently audited and verified;
  • ●  the trees would not be there but for the intervention of Forest Carbon and its partners.

Each project developed under the Code is registered with the independent Markit Envronmental Registry, and information submitted includes site boundaries, species mix, management plans, land ownership, financial modelling, carbon calculations and terms of the contracts between the parties. This information is then certified to ISO standards by a UK Accreditation Service (UKAS) accredited third party and an ongoing monitoring programme for the woodlands is agreed between the parties. Carbon credits that arise from certified projects appear on the Markit Envronmental Registry - giving buyers assurance and interested parties transparency.   

The Code is aligned with the core requirements of other international voluntary forest carbon standards and of the Kyoto Protocol.
Forest Carbon woodlands validated

Forest Carbon was proud to be the developer of the first project ever validated under the code: Milton of Mathers, in Aberdeenshire. To date (Feb '15) there have been 100 projects validated across the UK, 60 of them developed by Forest Carbon. 

The full Woodland Carbon Code project registry can be found here.