Through our Business Partnerships program, we assist companies interested in voluntary emissions reductions or philanthropic support of forest carbon and climate projects. To learn more about these projects, see our frequently asked questions below, or contact a member of our team.

What types of projects does The Conservation Fund support?

Conservation-based forest management: The Conservation Fund believes that working forests can be financially self-sustaining and environmentally healthy. We’re demonstrating a new way to sustainably manage forests, as a non-profit owner that uses both sound environmental strategy and sound economics—including a light-touch harvest regimen, sales of carbon offsets and a supply of local jobs. We work with our partners to skillfully manage both forest growth and harvest to ensure that these forests remain viable ecosystems for generations to come. Today, we’re directing donations toward the purchase of verified offsets resulting from our work toward California’s North Coast redwood region.

Reforestation: This project type was established as a philanthropic approach to support reforestation projects that trap carbon over time. For the past several years, The Conservation Fund’s carbon-based reforestation efforts have been focused across the bottomland hardwood forests from Kansas and Missouri to the Gulf Coast. Habitat loss is more pronounced here than in any other area of the United States—more than 24 million acres of bottomland hardwood forests have been cleared over the course of the last century. Restoring these lands are top priorities for The Conservation Fund and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Today, we’re directing donations toward restoring bottomland hardwoods at the Marias des Cygnes National Wildlife Refuge in Kansas and the Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge in Louisiana.

Tree planting: While these projects will not be validated to carbon standards, tree planting can play a critical role in climate change solutions. If your company would like to plant a tree for each employee, customer, at the point of purchase, or for other programs, we can help. Contact us to learn more about how you can help restore the Lower Rio Grande Valley in South Texas or the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

What standards and principles do the Fund’s carbon projects and calculators adhere to?

Carbon Calculator: The Conservation Fund’s carbon calculator uses calculation methods and standards set forth by The Greenhouse Gas Protocol Initiative (GHG Protocol).

Conservation-based forest management: We sell carbon offsets that result from improved operations through projects under the standards of the Climate Action Reserve and California Air Resources Board.

Reforestation: Our reforestation projects have been validated and verified under the Climate, Community and Biodiversity (CCB) Standards – Gold level.

Tree-planting: These projects are not verified to a carbon standard, but each tree planted is verified and stewarded in perpetuity by a state or federal natural resource agency.

How do trees trap carbon?

The process of collecting carbon in forests, soils, geological formations and other carbon “sinks” is called carbon sequestration. Native trees and forests help fight climate change as part of their natural processes. As they grow, trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, convert it to oxygen and store the carbon in their trunks, roots and leaves. In addition to trapping the gases that cause climate change, these forests provide a host of co-benefits to filter the water we drink, restore habitat for wildlife and enhance public recreation areas.

How much carbon dioxide does one tree absorb?

Sequestration rates are based on scientific research conducted by academics and consultants and have been taken from peer-reviewed scientific literature. These rates vary depending on tree species and geographic location. The Conservation Fund calculations assume average sequestration rates per acre of land reforested and include appropriate tree survival assumptions.

For example, in the Lower Mississippi River Valley, the Fund and its partners plant approximately 302 trees per acre, which will sequester an estimated 361 tons of carbon dioxide over 100 years. Therefore, on a per planted tree basis, each tree absorbs approximately one ton of carbon dioxide over its lifetime. The EPA estimates that 1 tree will trap 1 metric tonne of carbon over its lifetime.

How much does it cost?

Your charitable contribution of approximately $9.00 per metric ton of CO2 sequestered supports the Fund’s efforts to protect, restore and manage native forests that will reduce the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, protect wildlife habitat, support the green economy and enhance America’s public recreation areas. Donations are also used to measure, monitor and validate the projects over time.

We also seek support for tree-planting projects that are not verified to a carbon standard for a donation of approximately $2.50 per tree.

Who cares for the trees?

Conservation-based forest management: We do. Today, we own and manage nearly 74,000 acres of sustainable working forests as carbon projects, including our Buckeye, Garcia River, Big River, Salmon Creek and Gualala River forests. We’re demonstrating a new way to sustainably manage these lands, as a non-profit owner that uses both sound environmental strategy and sound economics—including a light-touch harvest regimen, sales of carbon offsets and a supply of local jobs. We work with our partners to skillfully manage both forest growth and harvest to ensure that these forests remain viable ecosystems for generations to come.

Reforestation: We work primarily with state and federal public land agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. These government agencies are the long-term land managers and stewards of the projects and employ well-trained biologists and environmental professionals. Our public agency partners provide written verification of each planting and are responsible for the monitoring and stewardship of the land once it is restored. Together, with these public agencies, we have resorted over 35,000 acres of land back to its native state.

Tree planting: These projects are also primarily monitored by state and federal public land agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Can my support of carbon projects be included in my company’s sustainability reporting?

Yes. We can help you communicate your purchase for a variety of reporting mechanisms. We provide you the information you will need for the following: Corporate Sustainability Reports (CSR), Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), Climate Disclosure Project (CDP) and American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) – as well as others.

Who do I contact for The Conservation Fund’s voluntary climate and carbon projects?

Companies interested in participating in voluntary emission reductions and philanthropic support through forest carbon projects should contact Lauren Fety, lfety@conservationfund.org.

My company may be regulated by cap and trade. Can I use these projects for offsetting?

Companies interested in compliance-eligible offsets should contact Lauren Fety, lfety@conservationfund.org.