Elizabeth Hardee, The Climate Trust
November 12, 2014
The Coalition on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases (C-AGG) is a group of stakeholders working to achieve emission reductions from the agricultural sector. The group meets three times per year; the most recent meeting was held in Washington DC on November 5th and 6th. The Climate Trust was represented at the meeting by Teresa Koper, Liz Hardee, Peter Weisberg and Sean Penrith.
The meeting kicked off with a session highlighting the most recent scientific knowledge—both with respect to the urgency of action on climate change, and to the need to update current greenhouse gas (GHG) calculation metrics to more accurately reflect our understanding of the impacts of various types of greenhouse substances. The meeting closed with a discussion of actions being taken (and considered) on a national level by the State Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, in addition to the U.S.’s participation in international climate forums.
During the course of C-AGG, were sessions updating participants on the California Air Resources Board’s proposed draft of the rice protocol—comment period open until 12/15/2014—the process of verifying emission reductions, recent happenings at the three major offset standard bodies, available farmer incentives, and other land-use groups. The meeting also served as an opportunity for both inclusive and private discussions about policies and the overall direction of the agricultural offset market.
This market continues to face a variety of challenges, from lack of a strong and unified price signal to issues with protocol ease of use. Buyers are currently scarce and project verification expensive. Despite the obstacles, C-AGG and its members continue to make progress toward a reliable agricultural carbon market, with central focus points in research, collaboration, strategies, and educational outreach to decision makers.
In the coming months, The Climate Trust plans to engage the market within the context of its reformation as a Carbon Investment Management Organization, in the hope that the organizations’ new direction and connections can help to catalyze the type of steady investment the sector needs to be successful in the future.