The Nature-Based Credit Science Decoder Series: Agricultural Land Management

Accounting methods that center scientific best practices are the backbone of high-quality carbon projects. However, while scientific advancements have markedly improved carbon accounting to date, the continuous evolution of practices can make it difficult for buyers to understand which practices are high-quality when purchasing credits.

The Nature-Based Credit Science Decoder Series is a set of explainers on current scientific best practices and gaps for carbon projects developed in seven common Natural Climate Solutions (NCS) pathways.

This first Decoder provides an overview of the scientific approaches that Agricultural Land Management (ALM) projects apply and highlights the best practices among them. We cover the ways in which projects define their baselines, measure and quantify emission reductions and removals, estimate uncertainty, and monitor project activities and permanence. These best practices are then compared to ALM methodologies in the market today. With this summary, buyers of high-quality carbon credits can better evaluate whether projects are effectively deploying rigorous scientific tools and approaches. They can also identify priority areas for research investment.