The New Bottom Line in the forest products industry is the Carbon Canopy, a ground-breaking initiative that puts forest management in the Southeastern US at the forefront of supply chain innovation. This region, the world’s leading source of pulp, paper, and timber and home to its most biodiverse temperate forests, can also help buffer us from climate change.
Working together to achieve the highest standards of forest management, landowners, environmental groups, the forest products industry and leading green businesses developed a system that turns carbon into a financial tool that will benefit each partner and the environment for generations to come.
Building Business with Credible Forest Conservation
In early 2007 Dogwood Alliance and Staples, Inc., convened a diverse set of stakeholders to discuss the potential for leveraging the emerging carbon market to expand forest conservation and FSC certification on private lands in the South. Through this collaborative effort, the Carbon Canopy was initiated — with conservation organizations, landowners, large paper and wood product manufacturers, and consumers all at the table.
Carbon Canopy’s first project is focused on building a credible carbon market model for the South’s private forest landowners. In a nutshell, landowners are compensated for managing their forests in ways that help remove carbon from the atmosphere. But that’s just the beginning.
The Carbon Canopy partners are also exploring the possibilities of other credible conservation models. If landowners can be compensated for forest conservation through a carbon market, can there be similar markets for other benefits of smart forest management like reduced soil erosion, plentiful aquifers or water quality?
By finding new ways to invest in credible forest conservation, management and restoration, the Carbon Canopy intends to not only reduce carbon emissions, but also ensure a healthy forest legacy for future generations, provide a helping hand to the millions of families and individuals who manage forestland in the Southern US and elsewhere, and support local and regional economies by creating products that originate from forests managed to the highest environmental standard.
Corporate partners under the Carbon Canopy include Staples, The Home Depot, Columbia Forest Products, Domtar, Conservation Forestry, The Forestland Group, Interface and Coca Cola. Conservation partners include Dogwood Alliance, The Pacific Forest Trust, Rainforest Alliance, Green Press Initiative, and FSC.