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Old Baldy, Canada | photo by Cameron Schaus
Conservation Issues of the Ventana Chapter | santa cruz wide
Lompico forest to benefit from PG&E program
March 2008

The 425-acre Lompico Headwaters Forest will benefit from a new program of emissions reductions (carbon credits) offered by Sempervirens and Pacific Gas and Electric as part of PG&E's Climate Smart™ program. The program will purchase 14,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emission reductions under California's rigorous forest carbon sequestration project protocols.

"This project sets significant precedent by establishing an economic value for redwood forestland other than timber harvest or development potential. Forest lands have traditionally been given a value based on what can be extracted from them. Our project is groundbreaking in that it places an economic value on preserved forests without sending them to the lumberyard." said Brian Steen, Executive Director of Sempervirens Fund.

Scientific evidence indicates redwood forests have the highest carbon density per acre of any ecosystem in the world. Older redwood forests, under a management regime of preservation, sequester much higher amounts of carbon than younger forests that are often subject to regular timber harvests. This makes redwood forest protection key to any overall strategy to stabilize atmospheric CO2 concentrations.

"By partnering in the Lompico Headwaters Forest Carbon Project, PG&E and Sempervirens Fund are responding creatively to the global warming challenge," said Gary Patton, General Counsel of the Planning and Conservation League. "I'm proud that their precedent setting initiative is occurring in Santa Cruz County. It's a model of bringing together forest preservation and emissions reduction."

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