28 Apr The Voluntary Carbon Market
Over the past decade Haller Kenya has evolved into a self-funded model, which means that Haller UK has been able to build new expertise and scale up its impact. Our new focus is on the Voluntary Carbon Market, and the benefits it can create for both communities and ecosystems supported by Haller.
The latest IPCC report demonstrates that the world is at a tipping point. In Africa, agricultural productivity growth has been reduced by 34% since 1961 due to climate change and future warming will only add pressure to already fragile food systems. Despite this gloomy outlook, there are positively more moves on a global scale to take action against global warming.
One of these efforts has been the movement towards Net Zero by 2050, which includes a number of initiatives aimed at reducing the impact of CO2 emissions. One of these initiatives is the establishment of the voluntary carbon market.
The voluntary carbon market is a mechanism for companies, businesses and individuals to voluntarily offset their emissions by investing in sustainable climate services such as emission removal and avoidance projects. The market functions on the transaction of carbon credits where one credit is equivalent to one tonne of CO2 avoided or sequestered.
Our goal now is to develop a sustainable and certified carbon offset project in Mombasa, in partnership with smallholder farmers. In doing so, we aim to promote resilient and thriving communities and ecosystems, while simultaneously tackling the accelerating climate crisis.
In the past, carbon offsetting has been criticised because of the negative impact it can have on ecosystems and biodiversity as carbon credits are often generated through the establishment of quickly growing monocultures, such as pine trees. However, with our ethos of ecology and economy at our core, Haller strives to challenge these critics, aiming to generate ‘premium’ and ethical carbon credits to trade on the Voluntary Carbon Market, accurately representing emission reductions or removals, and maximising the climate, socio economic and ecological benefits for local communities and ecosystems.
Carbon credits have already reduced the amount of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere by more than 1 billion tonnes – the equivalent of the emissions of 213,000,000 vehicles driven for a year, but strong collective action needs to continue to reach net zero.
Smallholder farmers already play an important role in reducing the level of CO2 in the atmosphere by storing it in natural carbon pools such as in forests and in the soils.
This new direction for Haller allows us to build on our achievements over the past two decades, continuing to play a role in improving the lives of smallholder communities in Kenya, whilst also making a positive contribution towards the climate and environment.
We expect it will take 3 years of discovery, design and development before certification is achieved, but the foundations are already underway, and we now invite our international community of donors and supporters to join us on this exciting new journey.