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Frequently Asked Questions
Photo: Salish Eye Productions
What is the BigCoast Forest Climate Initiative?The BigCoast Forest Climate Initiative (BigCoast Forest) reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 20 million tonnes over the life of the project while generating an economic return for Mosaic Forest Management (Mosaic). The initiative conserves 40,000 hectares (100,000 acres) of unique forest ecosystems on Vancouver Island, Haida Gwaii and Coastal British Columbia. By committing timberlands to a nature-based climate solution, we will increase carbon storage and avoid future GHG emissions. BigCoast Forest is a grouped project, allowing for the addition of project activity instances (areas and interested property owners) following project validation. Through a growing mix of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives and timber harvest, Mosaic can drive sustainable economic value for our company and provide sustainable products that are a part of the solution to climate change. Part of the proceeds from the sale of the credits will flow each year to the Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas (IPCA) Innovation Program and the Pacific Salmon Foundation to support scientific and First Nations cultural research on and around the project lands. This research aims to identify ecological and cultural priorities within the project lands to inform long-term decision-making on and around the project lands.
How will you ensure that Mosaic is living up to its commitment?BigCoast Forest will be independently audited under the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) – the world’s most widely-used, transparent and rigorous voluntary GHG program. All VCS projects are subject to regular monitoring and audits, including in the field, by Verra staff and their qualified independent third-party auditors to ensure compliance with VCS’ rigorous standards. Mosaic is a leader in sustainable forest management and responsible stewardship. We will continue to report on the progress we make – like we do on all our ESG initiatives – including progress that we make on attracting new partners and identifying additional areas of land to increase our impact.
What are Verra, VCS, and AFOLU?Verra is a global non-profit corporation based in Washington, DC. They act as the Secretariat for the various environmental standards and programs under their management. The Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) is one of seven programs developed by Verra to encourage environmental and sustainable development efforts and drive large-scale investment to sustain them. Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use (AFOLU) is the project category encompassing all standards relating to nature-based projects. BigCoast Forest utilizes the VM0012 – Improved Forest Management in Temperate and Boreal Forests, logged to protected AFOLU Standard.
How do I know the credits created by BigCoast Forest are real and credible?BigCoast Forest has been verified to the most recent versions of all the standards and methodologies set out by the VCS and managed by Verra. All credits verified under any VCS program, including those generated by BigCoast Forest, are rigorously audited to the following quality assurance principles: Additional: BigCoast Forest exceeds the likeliest “business-as-usual” scenario and demonstrates that CO2 reductions/removals would not occur without the revenue from the sale of VCUs (credits). Real and Measurable: BigCoast Forest applies an approved methodology (VM0012) to ensure reductions/removals have already taken place and are measurable. Conservative: BigCoast Forest uses conservative assumptions, values, and procedures to ensure reductions/removals are not overstated. Permanent: BigCoast Forest ensures reductions/removals are not lost due to unforeseen events such as fire, disease, or pests. A portion of credits are kept in a buffer (insurance) account and can be accessed in case of unforeseen loss events. Independently Verified: BigCoast Forest has contracted an approved auditor, a validation/verification body (VVB), to confirm that the project design meets the VCS criteria and that all reductions and removals are quantified according to the VCS requirements and criteria. Uniquely numbered and transparently listed: BigCoast Forest is registered with the Verra Registry to ensure each VCU is assigned a unique serial number and listed on the registry.
How do BigCoast Forest Improved Forest Management (IFM) credits differ from REDD+?BigCoast Forest has applied an Improved Forest Management (IFM) framework, which enables forest management activities that result in increased carbon stocks within forests and/or reduce GHG emissions from forestry activities when compared to business-as-usual forestry practices. Whereas REDD+ is a framework used in the forestry sector in developing countries that reduces emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, as well as the sustainable management of forests & conservation of forest carbon stocks in developing countries. BigCoast Forest exists in a highly regulated environment, requiring intense audit procedures to verify critical project components such as baseline and additionality to ensure the legitimacy and climate impact resulting from the project.
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