Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and Forest Offsets

The Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences has created recommendations for forest offsets for RGGI.

They are very interesting! Think “scale’ as a major factor. From their Introduction:

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is a cap-and-trade system designed to limit the emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs) from electricity generation in 10 northeastern states starting in 2009. Power plants seeking to meet their RGGI obligations have the option to offset a portion of their emissions (up to 3.3%) through projects that reduce emissions or sequester carbon in other sectors (such as the forestry sector).The Maine Forest Service and its partners, Environment Northeast (ENE), Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences, and the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, have been asked by the RGGI Staff Working Group to propose recommendations for possibly expanding forest carbon offset project types in RGGI. This document represents a brief summary of our recommendations at this time. As we have worked to develop these recommendations, it became apparent to us that projects under a cap-and-trade program cannot address all that is needed to capitalize on the full potential forests have to reduce atmospheric GHGs; therefore, we recommend a two-pronged strategy which goes beyond these recommendations for expanding the range of carbon offset projects which are eligible. The second prong is to support programs which help keep forests as forests and maintain current management because these efforts too benefit carbon storage even though they cannot meet RGGIs requirements for offsets.