US-headed Hartree Partners LP, a leading global energy and commodities trading company, and compatriot Wildlife Works, an innovative global conservation company, have announced a "ground-breaking deal" that will generate over US$2 billion of private sector investment to enable communities to protect biodiversity and forests at risk from deforestation.
According to the European Commission (EC), some 13 million hectares of tropical forest, an area the size of Greece, is currently lost to deforestation every year. However, according to McKinsey, to keep global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees Celcius in line with the Paris Agreement, more than three-quarters of deforestation must be stopped by 2030.
Thousands of companies are addressing the climate emergency and, with voluntary carbon markets playing an increasingly prominent role, the demand for Verified Emissions Reductions (VERs) is forecast to outstrip supply.
Hartree Partners and Wildlife Works aim to help meet this surging demand by partnering to invest in, develop, manage and market one of the world’s largest portfolios of avoided deforestation projects.
Over 20 high-impact projects
The partnership will develop more than 20 high-impact projects in collaboration with local forest communities to improve livelihoods while preserving and protecting forests and wildlife in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
The deal, which will increase the availability of high-quality, verified, avoided deforestation projects by approximately 40 percent, will reduce emissions from deforestation by 20 million tonnes each year – or 600 million tonnes over the 30-year life of the projects.
Hartree’s investment is effective immediately, with the projects expected to begin delivering VERs by 2023.
The scientific community agrees that the world cannot keep global temperature rise below 1.5C without significant support from global businesses. Hartree Partners is proud to be providing substantial long-term investment in nature-based solutions through this partnership. We’re delighted to be working with such experienced partners as Wildlife Works to ensure that these projects reduce emissions, protect highly threatened species, and enhance the wellbeing of thousands of people in these forest communities who hold the key to stopping deforestation, said Ariel Perez, Partner at Hartree Partners.
The ground-breaking deal was facilitated by Everland LLC, the exclusive marketing partner of Wildlife Works. The portfolio will be marketed by Everland and Vertree, the latter a joint venture formed between Hartree Partners and sustainability leaders SYSTEMIQ.
Hartree’s financial commitment to Wildlife Works will help give forest governments, landowners, and communities long-term financial confidence as they consider valuing their standing forests under REDD+. The VERs will be offered to businesses as an essential tool they can use as part of their transition plan towards a low-carbon future. It is our hope that this partnership’s bold commitment to rapidly scale REDD+ projects will inspire more private sector action at the critical speed and magnitude that is so desperately needed, said Gerald Prolman, CEO of Everland.
Wildlife Works’ proven approach addresses the drivers of deforestation in last-chance ecosystems while rewarding communities for protecting forests and biodiversity.
The portfolio of projects announced on July 26, 2021, will meet global best practice standards for nested projects under VERRA, including the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS); the Climate, Community, and Biodiversity (CCB) standard at the gold level; and the SD Vista standard to verify project contributions to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and can make a significant contribution to host country Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) achievements under the Paris Agreement.
While those in the Global North continue to debate what they want from climate action, our partners in the Global South urgently need just and effective solutions now. With Hartree Partners’ financial backing and carbon market expertise, we can implement our just and inclusive climate, community, and biodiversity solutions in many more forest communities where they’re desperately needed said Mike Korchinsky, Founder and CEO of Wildlife Works.