In the summer of 2008, AD Partners launched its REDD Methodology Project. The initiative has brought together a group of internationally recognized experts to develop a series of freely available methodology modules for advancing REDD projects. These modules will enable project developers to estimate the real emission reductions of projects that reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation (“REDD”). This effort is critical to demonstrating and ensuring the environmental integrity of REDD projects, accelerating the development and implementation of REDD projects, and preventing the fragmented, project- specific approach to methodology development that has occurred in the afforestation and reforestation sector. Appropriate REDD methodologies and demonstration projects will also be critical in informing international climate policy as the international climate change negotiations progress. We believe that those involved in US climate policy will find this exercise equally interesting.

AD Partners first presented a set of the draft modules on diverse methodological aspects for REDD activities at aside event at the 2nd Forest Day organized by CIFOR in Poland at the 14th session of the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties in December 2008. The modules went through a peer review process in early 2009 and in April 2009 the modules were submitted to TÜV SÜD to conduct the first approval against the Voluntary Carbon Standard’s (VCS) new rules for Agriculture, Forestry, and Other Land Use (AFOLU). The modules submitted to TÜV SÜD were open for public comments and can be downloaded from their website.

TÜV SÜD made a number of requests for clarifications or corrections, but did not identify any significant flaws. The team of experts continued to work with TÜV SÜD until April 2010, making a number of changes to the modules including a number of revisions and some consolidation of modules. While TÜV SÜD’s work was high quality, it was processing the modules too slowly. In April 2010 SQS was chosen as the replacement auditor.

Progress through 2010

Work on the modules continued, and on 24th September 2010 SQS issued the first approval of the modules. The validation report containing all the corrective action requests and clarification requests by TÜV SÜD and SQS along with the responses to these requests is available for download on the VCS website.

Rainforest Alliance began the second approval of the modules under the VCS double approval procedures in August 2010. Rainforest Alliance and Winrock International went through three rounds of review and edits to finalize the validation before Rainforest Alliance gave the second approval on 30th November 2010. Special thanks needs to go to both companies for their efforts that ensured the second approval occurred in time for final VCSA approval during COP16 in Cancun.

Final VCSA approval – December 2010

The VCS granted the final approval of the REDD Methodology Modules on December 3, 2010 during the UNFCCC COP 16 meetings in Cancun. The set of modules allows project developers to construct a project specific methodology from the set of approved modules. The final modules can be used to generate methodologies for projects that reduce emissions from planned and unplanned deforestation and forest degradation caused by extraction of wood for fuel.

  • Learn more about the REDD Modules in the VCS statement at their website.

For more information or questions regarding the modules please see the information brief or contact Robert O’Sullivan of Climate Focus.

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REDD Methodology Project Team

Project Directors

  • Dr. Charlotte Streck — AD Partners and Climate Focus, Netherlands and USA
  • Robert O’Sullivan — AD Partners and Climate Focus, USA

Sponsorship and Support

  • Jeff Horowitz — AD Partners, USA

Lead Drafting Team

  • Dr. Tim Pearson — Winrock International, USA
  • Dr. Sandra Brown — Winrock International, USA
  • Dr. Lucio Pedroni — Carbon Decisions, Costa Rica
  • Dr. Igino Emmer — Silvestrum, Netherlands
  • David Shoch — TerraCarbon, USA

The project team encourages and welcomes financial sponsorship from foundations, for-profit and non-profit groups. All contributions are tax deductible in accordance with U.S. law. The team also welcomes the intellectual support from the full spectrum of organizations, governments, companies and individuals that may wish to endorse this effort and offer comments as we proceed.

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Additional Documents