1.1 Key project dates

Requirement

Project start dates

Project duration

Project end date

Requirement

  • All projects shall register before the start of planting (project implementation date).
  • Single projects shall be validated within 3 years of registration.  For groups, projects can be added to a group (subject to group rules) up to the point of validation.  Group validation shall be carried out within three years of the date of the first registration within the group.  For single projects or groups, a validation extension will be given in extenuating circumstances.
  • Validation Statements shall only be issued once planting is completed.
  • Projects shall have a clearly defined duration and shall not exceed 100 years. Projects involving clearfelling shall have a minimum project duration equal to the shortest clearfell rotation in the project.

This requirement is only checked at validation unless changes are made to the project duration.

Project start date and registration 

The project implementation date is the date when planting begins, or for natural regeneration, the date when fencing or deer control begins.  For a project with a combination of planting and natural regeneration, the project implementation date will be the earliest of the two dates.

The project start date is the last day of planting, or for natural regeneration, 5 years after the project implementation date.  For a project with a combination of planting and natural regeneration, the project start date will be the latest of the two dates.  Carbon sequestration is claimed from the start date.

For groups of projects validated together, the group start date is the latest start date within the group. Carbon sequestration is claimed from the group start date.

The date of registration is the date on which a project moves from ‘Draft’ to ‘Under Development’ status on the UK Land Carbon Registry. This is the date the project is approved by the WCC Secretariat and IHS Markit.

If projects are registered after tree planting has started, then the project developer will have to supply evidence to confirm that carbon finance from selling carbon units or 'insetting' (creating your own carbon units) was considered necessary in the planning stages of the project (for example the inclusion in minutes of board meetings or planning documents).

Project duration

The project duration is the time over which carbon sequestration claims are to be made.  The duration can be up to 100 years from the project start date, and for schemes involving clearfelling the minimum duration is the length of the shortest clearfell period in the project.  Many schemes claim carbon for a shorter period (e.g. 40 years for a conifer project managed on a 40 year rotation, or 65-75 years for a native woodland project managed with minimum intervention).  This could be because the landowner does not want to commit for a longer period, or as it is not cost effective to verify carbon sequestration from later vintages.

Project end date

The project end date is the project start date + project duration.  E.g. if project start date is 01/04/2013 and duration is 100 years then end date is 31/3/2113.

The project duration should not be confused with permanence.  All projects shall involve a permanent land-use change to woodland cover.

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