As a member of the Cool Farm Alliance, we are using the Cool Farm Tool (CFT) to calculate the total farm footprint, including all sources of internal CO2 emissions. In addition to the assessment of the CFT, our Standard is assessing data on afforestation & reforestation, compost requirements, renewable energy and soil carbon sequestration. With the help of the CFT, it is possible to get a holistic picture of each farm’s impact. CFT covers the five different areas of; tree, compost, renewable energy, soil, and livestock represented in:
Soil Carbon Sequestration
How it Works
The Economy of Love Standard uses verified assessment tools to collect data on the number of carbon emissions, sequestration, or avoidance. It allows the EoL to sell carbon credits under verified conditions. To ensure that a farm meets all Economy of Love criteria, the following key requirements have to be met:
EoL Afforestation & Reforestation Requirements
The EoL Tree Tool calculates the above-ground biomass and the below-ground biomass through the methods of the Clean Development Mechanism CDM (IPCC Guidelines). For planting and assessment of new trees, the “Guide to Good Practice for Land Use – Land Use Change and Forestry” (GPG-LULUCF) is used. The estimated carbon stock depends on the average carbon sequestration on the licensee farm during the crediting period. For Afforestation/Reforestation (A/R) EoL counts a crediting period of a minimum of 30 years and a maximum of 50 years. The amount of carbon sequestration depends on the estimated growth rate of the trees during the crediting period of the EoL licensee. Yearly forest inventory should be done to update the carbon model and accordingly adapt the growth rate. The estimated carbon stock is calculated according to every tree species by the use of the IPCC factors. A realistic survival rate should be reflected in the growth model. Replanting of newly planted trees of 10% to 20% is normal in the long-term CO2-Fixation project.
The Economy of Love Licensee will also be encouraged to avoid the production of methane from biomass and other organic matter that would have otherwise been left to decay anaerobically in a solid waste disposal site without methane recovery, partly in uncontrolled dumping sites and partly burnt.
- If the EoL Licensee produces compost on-site, the EoL Compost tool needs to be applied.
- In case the EoL Licensee buys the compost from outside, the assessment through the CFT would be sufficient.
Renewable energy on EoL licensee sites needs to be calculated using the CFT. The baseline emissions are calculated based on the fuel consumption of the technology in use or that would have been used to generate the equivalent quantity of energy.
Soil Carbon Sequestration
Farmers cultivating their land according to organic or biodynamic principles are obliged to use the calculated CFT soil results for the first 20 years after their conversion.
If the licensee cultivated land has already reached the conversion of organic agricultural land for over 20 years, the soil assessment of CFT is not needed anymore. In this case, only the standard soil analysis needs to be submitted to determine the carbon sequestration in the soil and results should be reinserted into the CFT. These soil carbon credits should only be used in the internal farm calculation and not be sold as EoL carbon credits.
The amount of annual emissions from the livestock or the amount of emissions from the entire lifespan of the animals is calculated with the CFT. It provides data on the emissions of the animal type throughout its entire life. This option is useful if licensees need to be able to calculate the emissions per dozen eggs, per gallon or liter of milk, or per kilogram of edible meat.
Avoiding Double Counting
Double counting of CO2 certificates is a situation in which the same CO2 certificate is used to offset emissions in more than one emissions reduction project. This undermines the integrity of emissions reduction projects and the environmental benefits they provide.
The EoL certification standard is designed to prevent the double counting of CO2 certificates by requiring that each certificate is tracked and accounted for individually. This includes the insurance that the same certificate is not used more than once. EoL also requires that each certificate issued has a unique identifier and that all transactions involving the certificate are recorded in the secure, centralized EoL carbon registry. In partnership with the CFC, EoL created a coding system that depends on a serial number connected to a related ISO certificate, including farm code, name, invoices, the issue date, and the amount of CO2. Furthermore, the EoL registry allows credits to be assigned only once, and there is no option to transfer credits to any other account.
Ensuring Long-Term Carbon Sequestration
The Economy of Love Standard ensures that the emission reductions from sequestration
represent permanent carbon reductions, in cases like wildfire, change of land use or owner, etc. This is why the certification of EoL carbon sequestration is ensured through sustainable safeguarding steps that include abidance to the EoL criteria, requirements for carbon calculation, and going through the process of annual monitoring, reporting, and verification.
The EoL Carbon Buffer
The EoL Carbon Buffer is solidarity-based and requires that 20% of the Carbon Credit revenue be withheld for five years. Every five years, appropriate assessments and evaluations are made on all member farms, and if all calculations meet expectations, the missing amount can be disbursed. In case carbon sequestration is not maintained or carbon is released back into the atmosphere due to an event such as wildfire, unplanned deforestation, termination of a long-term contract, or other changes in management practices, carbon credits calculated to date will be compensated by the solidary carbon buffer (20%). With the
implementation of this safety step, the EoL standard actively guarantees the commitment and the promise of long-term carbon sequestration.