What we do
Forests Alive is a consultant and project developer for forest protection projects that deliver verified carbon and biodiversity benefits.
There is a strong body of scientific evidence that the most effective climate mitigation action in the forest sector is to protect intact native forest carbon stocks, followed by restoration of degraded native forest carbon stocks, followed by restoration plantings. Confusing high rates of sequestration (in young forests) with slower rates in older forests, obscures the primary climate value of a forest – namely, the stability and size of the forest carbon stock. Protecting the carbon stocks in existing (and especially older) forests is more important from a climate perspective than planting new forests or trees because the older the forest the more carbon is relatively safely stored. Nor are old forests ‘carbon neutral’ - they continue to sequester carbon while ever they are alive.
Biodiversity found at all levels in natural forests confers resilience on the carbon stored in those forests. Natural forest ecosystems, have far greater resistance to pests, disease and fire than planted forests. As resilience improves the security of the carbon stock improves. The links between biodiversity and climate change flow both ways. And biodiversity, through the ecosystem services it supports, makes an important contribution to both climate change mitigation and adaptation.
There are a growing number of calls in the scientific literature for national and international climate policy and market mechanisms to better support protection of intact forests in the developed and developing world.
While policy lags behind the science there is no doubt that those taking action to protect biodiverse natural forests and improve their resilience are taking strong climate action.