The government has recently launched the Woodland Carbon Guarantee Scheme. The scheme has a potential £50 million of funding and aims to encourage landowners and farmers to plant trees for carbon capture. In return, they will get a long-term income by selling ‘Woodland Carbon Units’ to the government over a 35 year period. The price will be guarantee and will be set via an online reverse auction. To bid in the auction, land managers will need to calculate how much money they need (per tonne of carbon dioxide) to make their project financially viable.
If their auction bid is successful, the government will offer a conditional index linked 30-35 year contract to buy the carbon dioxide. Land managers will also be able to apply for funding to establish the woodland through existing woodland creation grant schemes.
Whilst this scheme may only be suitable for larger projects at this stage, it shows the increasing drive towards financial incentives linked directly to environmental benefits. This is in keeping with the Government’s plan to provide ‘public money for public good’.
To apply, landowners and farmers need to register their project with the Woodland Carbon Code. Further information on eligibility and applying to the Woodland Carbon Guarantee Scheme is available on GOV.UK.
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