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  • CarbonCrop Team

AI Gives Native Forest Owners A Larger Slice Of A $90 Million Annual Carbon Credit Pie

There are approximately 150,000 hectares of native forest eligible to be registered in the ETS right now that are not currently registered. That is $90 million per year in carbon credits landowners are missing out on.

AI technology is better at identifying areas of native forest eligible for the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme than other methods which gives customers a better shot at a $90 million annual opportunity.

CarbonCrop CEO Jo Blundell says the company's technology is better at finding which natives are eligible than other methods. The additional carbon revenue achieved with the help of AI could be hugely significant to farmers, forest and land owners.

“Our technology means we can successfully take on the trickiest of native forests, which means natives that were not previously accepted into the ETS can now get another look in, and landowners with some native forest registered could actually have more than they think,” she says.

“Native forests currently only make up 17% of the total forested area registered under the ETS. CarbonCrop believes the effectiveness of its AI for measuring and registering native forests can help address the deficit.

CarbonCrop’s machine learning, aerial imagery and remote sensing technology can distinguish between trees and pasture, and recognise the heights, ages and species of tree eligible for the ETS.

“Native forests can be a real asset in catchment protection terms which has been obvious of late. Our AI tech allows farmers and other landholders to unlock more revenue from carbon credits. This ultimately incentivises the restoration and protection of native forests – which, in turn, incentivises more carbon getting sucked out of the atmosphere. This is a tailwind for our catchment health and zero emissions targets.”

“Some landowners, who registered forests early in the life cycle of the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), may still not be aware that technology has moved on and that highly accurate and verified forest assessments can now be conducted virtually – using AI to detect even subtle variations in the growth patterns,” Ms Blundell says.

CarbonCrop can conduct the whole registration process remotely without needing a site visit with its time, cost and health & safety considerations.

“There is no upfront fee for landholders to benefit from the AI technology. Our business model is based on a modest success fee - we don’t get paid unless our customers do. With the upfront risk of registering a native first removed, and technology on their side, our customers have a much higher likelihood and proportion of forest accepted under the ETS. They have a bigger slice of the $90 million per year pie,” says Jo Blundell.

Free land assessment requests are available at CarbonCrop's website

About CarbonCrop

CarbonCrop is a climate tech company applying AI to carbon forestry. Founded in Nelson in 2020 and growing rapidly, CarbonCrop is on a mission to make it simpler for landowners to get paid to protect and restore forests by giving them easy access to carbon markets. This delivers stronger farm economics, less carbon in the atmosphere heating up the planet, and improved climate resilience and biodiversity of our landscapes.

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Rebecca Hunink

Head of Marketing

027 3743 519

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