Climate & Community Benefit Project Guidelines
The Colorado Carbon Fund welcomes carbon positive programs such as soil biosequestration through holistic land management, sustainable agriculture and graising, as well as more socially-oriented community engagement projects.
These projects do not have to be verified carbon offset projects, but they must address areas around social and economic equity, while having an element of carbon reduction. We believe that support should come from local Colorado based projects where communities receive direct benefits from both the project and the reduction of carbon emissions.
Carbon Offset Project Guidelines
Colorado carbon offset projects must be registered with a verified carbon standard. They must also meet the following criteria to be considered for Colorado Carbon Fund support:
Local. All projects must be located in Colorado. Projects can be privately or publicly owned.
Additional. Project developers must demonstrate that selling emission reductions to Natural Capitalism Solutions somehow enables a project’s implementation and that without the opportunity to sell the project’s emission reductions the project would not occur. See our additionality standards for more details.
Direct. Projects must reduce emissions one or more of the six greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, sulphur hexafluoride). Projects must reduce emissions at the site where they are implemented by reducing or displacing the use of fossil fuels. Projects must also demonstrate clear ownership of the emissions reductions, therefore projects that reduce or displace grid electricity are not considered because they result in indirect emission reductions which may cause ownership and double counting concerns.
Scale. Projects must reduce at least 40,000 metric tons of CO2-equivalents over the contract term. Similar project types can be aggregated to meet the size requirement. For information and guidance on calculating emission reductions go to the baseline page. Also see the Quick Start Guide for examples of this scale of reductions.
Although the Colorado Carbon Fund is interested in a variety of clean technologies, we have a preference for projects related to the following:
Soil Carbon Biosequestration (e.g. Holistic Land Management)
We have also supported projects related to:
Landfill methane capture
Coal mine methane capture
We are not currently considering projects related to reducing or displacing the use of grid-tied electricity.
Quick Start Guide to Submitting Proposals
Step 1: Submit an initial proposal. In this three-page form, project developers request an amount of funding, and quantify the project’s greenhouse gas reductions.
Step 2: Submit a detailed proposal. Pending approval, in this formal proposal, project developers describe the project’s timeline, financing, and major risks, and attach a Pro Forma.
Step 3: Negotiate a contract. For projects that pass our due diligence, an Emission Reduction Purchase Agreement will be negotiated with project developers. This contract vehicle establishes such key terms as ownership of the project’s emission reductions, price, the timing of the payment, and provisions in case the project underperforms.
Additional. Project developers must demonstrate that selling emission reductions to The Climate Trust somehow enables a project’s implementation and that without the opportunity to sell the project’s emission reductions the project would not occur.
Scale. Projects should reduce at least 40,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents over the contract term (see below). We will consider smaller volume projects on a case by case basis.
Energy. Projects must reduce emissions through energy-related measures such as avoidance of methane emissions, switching to renewables, or making efficiency improvements. The Colorado Carbon Fund is not currently accepting sequestration project proposals.
Direct. Projects must reduce emissions at the site where they are implemented by reducing or displacing the use of fossil fuels. Projects that result in grid-electricity reductions are not considered because they result in indirect emission reductions causing ownership and double counting concerns.
A 40,000 metric ton CO2-e reduction is equivalent to:
Reducing or displacing
7.3 million therms of natural gas
7 million gallons of propane
4 million gallons of diesel
This is equivalent to the average heat use of twelve 75,000 square foot buildings over 15 years.
Reducing or displacing
Reducing 5 million gallons of gasoline
Switching 20 million gallons of diesel to B20
Assuming the average vehicle drives 15,000 miles per year, this is equivalent to:
the average gasoline use of 380 passenger vehicles over 15 years
the average diesel use of 92 heavy duty vehicles over 15 years
The manure from roughly 1,000 cows on a farm using a liquid manure management system (lagoon, pond, or holding tank) for 15 years
The Colorado Carbon Fund is dedicated to financing innovative projects that contribute to Colorado’s transition to a New Energy Economy and are not currently being funded by the rest of the renewable energy or carbon market.