We aim to plant 100,000 trees each year in the UK.
We use donor funds efficiently
When you provide funds to My Carbon Plan to plant trees, we challenge ourselves to get the maximum impact.
We are members of the Trillion Tree Challenge, an initiative which has planted 13.6 billion trees so far.
What we do, and why.
We plant trees.
Trees capture carbon. Planting trees is an effective way of capturing carbon. It is also important to preserve existing woodland.
We focus on funding the planting of new trees on land which isn't already woodland*:
trees capture more carbon as they are growing, compared to when they are fully mature; and
we want to increase the levels of forestation in the UK (and worldwide)
*There are already a number of good charities that preserve existing woodland.
We optimise for tree-years.
1 tree growing for 1 year equals 1 tree-year.
Everything we do seeks to optimise the number of tree-years we can create. The more trees we can plant, and the longer we can ensure the custodianship of the site, the better.
1 broadleaf (e.g. oak) tree-year will absorb 25-35kg of carbon, on average.
A smaller tree variety may absorb less, but may be planted more densely - so will capture similar levels of carbon per acre each year.
1 tonne of carbon offset costs from £6.50.
We operate different models, validated with data from academic studies, and 1 tonne of C02 offset costs from £6.50.
For example, this will fund 40 broadleaf 'tree-years'; or 20-30 willows planted for short rotation coppicing (SRC) for a 25-year period.
We select tree varieties carefully.
We like to plant two sets of trees:
trees native to a particular country or region; or
trees suitable for an appropriate end use-case e.g. construction.
We are sensitive to the local habitat and ecosystem, ensuring existing wildlife is not disrupted by our tree-planting activity.
Different trees absorb carbon at different rates - broadleaf trees are typically better than conifers (but can't be planted as densely).
We partner with others.
We partner with other groups and land owners to plant trees, supplying them with funding and saplings. In return we request a commitment that the planted trees will be:
there for a minimum of 10 years;
used for suitable purposes if they are chopped down (e.g. not burnt or sent to land fill); and
replaced if they are chopped down.
We select locations carefully.
We plant trees on three types of land:
Owned sites: we plant trees on our own land, to ensure full life-cycle protection of the trees and protect their end use-case;
Managed sites: we plant trees on other people's land, who have signed up to a commitment to preserve and protect the trees;
Micro sites: we partner with others, and may fund just a few trees, to assist with raising awareness of the importance of considering your carbon footprint - for example, working with schools
We own sites to maximise tree-years.
We aim to secure our own sites for 100 years. We assume partner sites are secured for a minimum of 10 years. The cost of securing land is offset by the longer period of custodianship.
We aim to create a virtuous cycle.
Planting a tree is only the start of the process. We conduct regular checks to ensure the trees are being well-maintained.
As trees reach maturity, we are open to them being used for sustainable purposes - such as furniture, construction and biofuels. As long as they are replaced with a similar number of saplings (or more!).
We own sites to help solve the 'carbon-well' problem.
Once carbon is captured in a forest it is known as a 'carbon-well'. This creates a problem - if the forest burns down, for example - all of the carbon could be realised back into the atmosphere.
By controlling the land that trees are planted on, we can ensure the end-use. We aim for trees to be harvested and used in construction, ensuring the carbon is captured forever. We can then plant more trees on the same land. And repeat...
We adopt best practices.
We monitor and contribute to discussions on best practices and regulations to ensure our activities are sustainable, and remain positive for the environment.
We engage with industry bodies and scientists to ensure our activities comply with best practices.
We provide transparency and accountability for donors, to ensure their funds have the greatest possible impact.