Trustable Credit co-creator Bunloit Rewilding have spent the last year trialling the use of various digital devices to collect trustable data about carbon sequestration, biodiversity and nature improvements. Hannah visited and made a film for the Farm Advisory Service about Bunloit’s measurement of natural capital baselines, and the practicalities of doing it with digital devices for trustable data. The Bunloit Natural Capital Report 2021 featured in the film, can be read here.
Further to the learning we gained together with Bunloit, in 2022, Trustable Credit will develop a further case study with co-creator Lauriston Farm, to pilot the standardised processes for digital devices and their data.
The Computational Sustainability Lab aims to deepen understanding of sustainability informatics and support the development of sustainable practices in all domains. Work in the field of computational sustainability is inherently interdisciplinary, as is action on sustainable development in general. The foundations of computational sustainability as a field of research were laid by Carla Gomes in 2008 with the establishment of the Institute for Computational Sustainability (ICS) at Cornell University. Its brief was to pursue a transformative research agenda and to concentrate the attention and efforts of computer scientists on the challenges around sustainability. The range of topics that fall under the banner of computational sustainability is very wide. It is also an associative field in the sense that work done for other reasons and without explicit reference to computational sustainability could still sit comfortably under its umbrella. Dr Brian Davison, the Lab’s lead, said:
“One of the main concerns of sustainability in general is the efficient husbandry of resources. From that perspective, many situations can be represented as optimisation problems where machine learning approaches are applicable. However, machine learning relies on the availability of sufficient quantities of reliable data, and data acquisition – for example, through sensors embedded in the environment – is a common requirement. One particular technological approach that is well-suited to addressing the various dimensions of a problem of this type is the new field of the Internet of Things (IoT). We’re excited to join Trustable Credit’s adhocracy to co-create standardised processes for digital devices and their data measuring environmental sustainability”.
RETINA, the NERC funded project for dynamic monitoring, reporting and verification for implementing negative emission strategies in managed ecosystems , has joined Trustable Credit.
RETINA is undertaking transdisciplinary research to harness recent advances in digital technology to make a step change in delivering integrated management options, co-produced with stakeholders, which can help to mitigate climate change. Carbon sequestration in soil is one of the most promising biological negative emission (BNE) technologies to mitigate climate change. Soil carbon sequestration relies on the adoption of best management practices to increase the amount of carbon stored in soil. An advantage of soil carbon sequestration in agriculture is that carbon stocks are most depleted in cropland systems, so there is great potential to capture atmospheric carbon without land use conversion and competition for land resources. Dr Jagadeesh Yeluripati, Principal Investigator of this project from The James Hutton Institute, Information and Computational Sciences Department said:
“The process of detecting and inferring soil carbon changes and GHG emissions is extremely data intensive. In order to understand the variability in soil carbon and GHG emissions there is a need to combine information from diverse sensor networks in different environments and to accurately model soil carbon changes and GHG emissions from various management practices. We are excited to join the Trustable Credit project to co-create standardised processes for sensors measuring soil carbon and GHG emissions.”
Soil Association, the charity that digs deeper to transform the way we eat, farm and care for our natural world, has joined Trustable Credit.
Soil Association’s mission is to help everyone understand and explore the vital relationship between the health of soil, plants, animals and people. Campaigning, educating and helping everyone to grow better together. It has a wholly-owned subsidiary Soil Association Certification Limited, the UK’s largest organic and forest management certification body. It runs Food for Life, the programme making good food the easy choice for everyone. It also oversees the Soil Association Land Trust, which acquires and maintains farmland sustainably and connects the public with land stewardship. Joseph Gridley is a new Director at the Soil Association, and said:
“I’m responsible for a brand new initiative at the Soil Association to help farmers and foresters learn about, measure the impacts of – and be financially rewarded for – managing their land regeneratively. The Soil Association Exchange (SAX) initiative aims to create an industry-wide set of standards and tools to enable farmers to make positive environmental and social changes on their farms. We look forward to continued co-development of standardised processes for digital devices and their data with Trustable Credit.”
Map of Ag, the global data platform connecting farms and industry has joined Trustable Credit.
Map of Ag’s data platform connects farm and agrifood sector data using a highly trusted permissioning and data management engine that puts each business in complete control of their data. Their expertise in data allows them to provide innovative insights for organisations across the supply chain, helping it become more efficient and sustainable. Hugh Martineau, Head of Sustainability, said:
“Reducing the administrative burden on farmers and providing increasingly granular data to populate Greenhouse Gas (GHG) models is now a core activity for Map of Ag. We need to be prove the quality, accuracy and validity of these data, and Trustable Credits open standards will help with that. We are pleased to be a part of the adhocracy co-creating them!”
The UK Woodland Carbon Code, the quality assurance standard for woodland creation projects in the UK, has joined the Trustable Credit group.
Backed by the Government, the forest industry and carbon market experts, the Code is unique in providing woodland carbon units in the UK. The Woodland Carbon Code is internationally recognised for high standards of sustainable forest management and carbon management and is endorsed by ICROA, the global umbrella body for carbon reduction and offset providers in the voluntary market. It is supported by robust science from Forest Research, independent validation and verification and a transparent registry where you can track ownership, transfer and use of credits. Pat Snowdon, Head of Economics and Woodland Carbon Code, said:
“This voluntary code encourages a consistent approach to woodland carbon projects, and offers clarity and transparency to customers. While society must take every effort to reduce its CO2 emissions, tree planting can also play a role by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. But before investing in such projects people want to know that schemes will actually deliver the carbon savings that they claim. Data from digital devices is something we are thinking about to enable this. Our being a part of the Trustable Credit open data standards co-creation group will ensure consistency in new digital approaches to data collection and verification.”
Earthly, the movement to invest in nature led by experts and businesses, has joined Trustable Credit.
Earthly is a platform that connects businesses to high-quality nature-based solutions (NbS) that remove carbon, restore biodiversity and support local communities. They are starting a Natural Revolution with people who want to work with nature, not against it, helping businesses and individuals to balance their carbon impact – and go beyond, to become climate-positive. Earthly’s focus is on profiling underrepresented and innovative NbS, whilst mapping out the wide spectrum of co-benefits related to projects. Their immersive platform makes it easy to see and share these co-benefits, which are brought to life through interactive 3D visualisation. Olly Bolton, CEO said:
“Our immersive platform makes it easy for you to monitor investments and develop a deeper relationship with the projects you are investing in. You’ll see the positive impact you’re making – for the planet and communities – as our visualisation evolves in line with real world projects. We aim to bring trust and transparency to investments in high-quality nature-based solutions through a scoring system for carbon, biodiversity and people and a climate resilience grading system. We can only provide this with a combination of data from digital devices such as satellites, drones and sensors. That data needs to be trustable. The open standards we will co-create together with the adhocracy will enable that.”
Lauriston Farm, the north-west Edinburgh urban site and proposed development project, has joined Trustable Credit.
Edinburgh Agroecology Co-op is proposing a new vision for Lauriston Farm, transforming an existing farm into an urban food production and community hub that benefits, supports and regenerates the environment and all those connected to it. Their vision is for a large scale urban food growing project which is nature rich, and which will benefit primarily the communities that live in the local area but also the wider city into the future. They aim to address some of the issues around access to local, affordable fresh produce, environmental degradation and lack of opportunities for people in cities to gain experience in food production resulting in a greater understanding of the wider food system. Leonie Alexander, a Director of Edinburgh Agroecology Co-op, said:
“Edinburgh Agroecology Co-operative (EAC) is a Community Interest Company (CIC), newly formed for developing this project – a unique opportunity to create a large urban farm in Scotland that will be beneficial for the land and the people. The Lauriston Farm proposal stands to be one of the most exciting projects we have ever been involved with, and can be an early adopter of digital devices for measuring carbon/biodiversity/nature improvements. Open standards to ensure trustability and transparency in the data are essential to develop, and we look forward to co-creating them.”
Terranomics, a consultancy focused on economic solutions to environmental problems, has joined Trustable Credit.
Terranomics is a UK-based consultancy with over 20 years experience in scaling up private investment in sustainable land use, climate change and conservation. Terranomics work with a range of leading corporations, investors, donors, NGOs and governments on their approach to these topics. Terranomics also has its own ventures arm, developing sustainable forestry enterprises in the UK, giving us a deep understanding of the need for trustable standards on carbon, biodiversity and nature credits. Associate Tom Chellew, said:
“We are used to working on sustainable land use investments, from project origination, incubation and structuring, through to landscape level programme design and multi-stakeholder partnerships. Realistic investment models need trustable primary data for measuring impact, and we’re thrilled to be a part of Trustable Credit to develop open standards for this”.
Gentle Farming, the business supporting regenerative agriculture in the UK, has joined Trustable Credit.
Gentle Farming’s business model and system allows farmers to quantify and market the amount of soil carbon they are sequestering into their soils per year. A regenerative farmer himself, founder Thomas Gent made the most of the first lockdown by looking into what opportunities soil carbon could provide for farmers and promote regenerative agriculture. They use an internationally recognised European soil carbon certification program called Commodicarbon. The system uses the best methods and technology available today in a practical and accessible way for farmers. Thomas Gent, Founder, said:
“We offer the UK’s first fully certified soil carbon offsetting scheme, but want to reward farmers for the holistic picture of their regenerative agriculture practices. By joining Trustable Credit, we are co-creating the open standards that any digital devices and their data measuring carbon sequestration, biodiversity and nature improvements can bring to that picture.”