Planet Alpha Direct Measurement GHG Project Registry
This registry does not inventory estimation-based greenhouse gas offsets
The only GHG registry featuring direct instrument measurement of CO2, CH4, and N2O
The PaC Registry is a no-cost, no-fee, listing of GHG emission reduction projects
Commercial and research data for GHG monitoring and isotopologues are included to ensure a harmonized framework
Phase I: Satellite Based Direct Carbon Flux
1. Alpha-Biosphere Offset Token products. PaC commercial projects based on satellite direct CO2 measurements that may include Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and overlapping Orbital Carbon Observatory 2 (OCO-2) column CO2 data
2. Research projects that report net carbon sequestration, and other greenhouse gases including isotopologues based on spectroscopic methods for quantification
Phase II: Ground-Based GHG Sensors
Phase II, beta-Biosphere Offset Token products are based on in-country direct gas (CO2, CH4, N2O) monitoring of forests and anthropogenic landscapes primarily focused on forest restoration and management utilizing ground-based CO2 gas sensors. Eddy covariance supports ground-based and tower deployments to sample gas flux, resulting in net ecosystem exchange (NEE) for carbon as the basis for carbon offsets. A three-step process
Resulting data from Phases I and II are monetized as place-name products, serialized, and listed on an online sales and accounting platform to satisfy individual, corporate, governmental, and not-for-profit needs for Gaia products.
The online accounting platform tracks sales and retirement of all products according to their stated terms of lifetime and other factors as may apply.
Forest carbon is valued in three steps, as shown in Figure 1 (below). Physical carbon is established by direct measurement, project carbon integrates the spatial and temporal boundaries of the project, and financial carbon is monetized and bundled in diverse portfolios for voluntary and compliance buyers. The figure is from: Marino BDV, Truong V, Munger JW, Gyimah R.2020. Direct measurement forest carbon protocol: a commercial system-of-systems to incentivize forest restoration and management. PeerJ8:e8891https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.8891.
Figure 1: Showing an overview of the DMFCP structure and process. The Direct Measurement Forest Carbon Protocol (DMFCP) measures gross vertical fluxes of carbon forest ecosystems important for carbon trading shown as geographical project boundary (dashed line); NEE, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 fluxes; AGC, above-ground carbon; BGC, below ground carbon; Photosynthesis, the total carbon uptake by plants or gross primary productivity (GPP); Respiration of ecosystem (Reco), total sources of CO2 released to the atmosphere from plants (AGC, Ra) and soil microbes (BGC, Rh); SoS sensor network; and, a Global Monitoring Platform (GMP). The SoS network and GMP’s are deployed across the project landscape, according to an engineering plan specifying the number, height, and placement of sensors, to determine net ecosystem exchange (NEE) representing net forest carbon sequestration for a project. Forest carbon gross fluxes (GPP, Reco) measured in situ and resulting in NEE is designated as Physical Carbon, total land area and time period of project performance are designated as Project Carbon, and annual accounting and registration of project carbon provide the basis (e.g., the quantity of tCO2eq available) and pricing for the sale of Financial Carbon. Multiple projects and resulting forest carbon products are combined in a Pooled Portfolio and listed in a registry detailing project accounting and verification criteria. Pooled Portfolio carbon products, based on equivalent carbon accounting, can be sold to voluntary and compliance buyers worldwide. Pooled Portfolio products may also incorporate additional greenhouse gas fluxes (e.g., CH4, N2O) and isotopic forms (e.g., isotopologues)2 that can be measured with precision in the field and typically reported in the delta notation with per mil units. 3The geographical project boundary may be comprised of local, regional, or larger land areas (e.g., state, country). Project types include: R, reforestation refers to a project that plants trees on a site previously forested; AD, avoided deforestation refers to a project that prevents deforestation; FM, forest management refers to a project that improves the net carbon sequestration; AF, afforestation refers to a project that establishes trees on the land that otherwise would not be planted; AG, agroforestry refers to a project that combines forest conservation and or tree planting with agriculture; TM, timber/wood products involves the sustainable harvest of timber within the project area resulting in wood products for construction and manufacturing. Traditional protocols do not directly observe CO2 but rely on proxies and estimation. The DMFCP is formalized with standardized intake forms listing a project (e.g., project listing application) and a project management plan defining terms and conditions for carbon product operations across multiple 10-year intervals. NEE records reductions in photosynthesis caused by fire and deforestation should these events occur in the project areas. Standing carbon inventory derived from biometric or remote sensing methods will be employed to augment and cross-check project NEE data. The SoS and GMPs operate as an integrated autonomous system to monitor, measure, and transform GHG flux data relative to local, regional, and global reference materials for bulk and isotopic composition, providing the basis for the calculation of verified tradeable GHG financial products that differentiate biogenic from anthropogenic net GHG fluxes (DOI: 10.7717/peerj.8891/fig-1)