The Inclusive Carbon Standard
In 2000, Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) launched the Trees for Homes programme under the Voluntary Carbon Standard methodology in which 200 000 trees were planted. However, the challenge of high audit costs resulted in no credits being issued. This sparked the idea to create an affordable carbon standard that could operate with the same credibility as existing standards with a reduced auditing, design and registration cost. Subsequently, the Inclusive Carbon Standard (ICS) was developed.
What sets the Inclusive Carbon Standard apart from existing standards?
Transparency: The ICS is built on transparency and aims to help communities gain access to the carbon market and earn carbon credits. By reducing the cost of registering a carbon project, it becomes affordable and accessible to everyone who wishes to participate, especially vulnerable communities.
Technology: Technological advancements in terms of efficiency and precision in collecting and measuring data have progressed, making it possible to utilise multiple, highly accurate techniques. As such, ICS makes use of drone and LIDAR technology to measure tree biomass, as well as the use of Internet of Things (IoT) services that can plug into solar renewables, which capture and send data to a platform.
Component Methodologies: Instead of binding users to a single cumbersome project methodology, the ICS allows users to develop smaller Component Methodologies and build out projects using a variety of them. These Component Methodologies are open source and can be accessed by any registered projects.
Inclusivity: Unlike existing standards ICS does not have any geographical or jurisdictional boundaries and the intention is to make the standard globally accessible by obtaining accreditation with international bodies such as the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance (ICROA) and the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). The ICS will also allow for the transfer of projects from existing standards to the ICS.