North America's Largest Forest Carbon Project in the Great Bear Rainforest Receives Final Verification
December 9, 2013, Vancouver, British Columbia:
Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc. (“OCS” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: COO) is proud to announce that the Great Bear (Haida Gwaii) Forest Carbon Project, has completed its first verification with international auditing firm KMPG Performance Registrar Inc. The Project was verified under British Columbia’s Forest Carbon Offset Protocol (“FCOP”), which is sanctioned by the BC Emission Offsets Regulation (“BC EOR”).
The Haida Gwaii Project is the third and final Project Area of the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project undertaken by the Coastal First Nations (“CFN”) and the Nanwakolas Council (“NC”), and is part of the largest forest carbon project developed in North America. The CFN is an umbrella group that represents First Nations on the North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii and the NC is comprised of seven First Nations whose traditional territories are between Smith and Bute Inlets, and on Northern Vancouver Island. This verification follows the 2011 verification of the North and Central Mid-Coast Project and the 2012 verification of the South Central Coast Project. The member Nations of the Coastal First Nations and the Nanwakolas Council have entered into an Atmospheric Benefit Sharing Agreement (ABSA) with the BC Government which defines how benefits from the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project will be shared between the governments.
In total, with the current Land Use Objectives the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project delivers up to 1 million tonnes of carbon offsets per year over 25 years from a total project area that covers more than 7 million hectares of coastal temperate rainforest. The Haida Gwaii Forest Carbon Project achieved 654,427 tonnes of emission reductions from the 2011/2012 verification period.
The Great Bear Forest Carbon Project represents a milestone in Canadian history and a milestone for human well being and conservation on land with unextinguished Aboriginal Rights and Title. First Nations hold unextinguished Aboriginal Rights and Title in the Great Bear Rainforest, while the Province of British Columbia asserts Crown title to the land. The CFN, NCS and the Province negotiated a number of landmark agreements, including Reconciliation Protocols that acknowledged carbon assets on the land and included a commitment to share benefits. The benefit sharing agreement for carbon with the Province gave the Nations a tool to develop a conservation-based economy utilizing carbon finance.
Great Bear Carbon Corporation (“GBCC”) president Chief Harold Leighton commented, “The verification of the Haida Gwaii is an important milestone for the Coastal First Nations. The Great Bear Forest Carbon Project is the result of government to government negotiations that resulted in the establishment of over two million hectares in Conservation Areas, and major reductions in harvest volumes throughout the entire Rainforest.” Chief Leighton further added, “Carbon Financing was necessary in the negotiations for securing our support of legislative commitments, and is an essential component in building the conservation economy that will support healthy ecosystems and healthy local communities.”
Offsetters worked closely with the GBCC and NCS on the Haida Gwaii project. Offsetters was the Project Manager, developing the required Project Design Documentation, completing the harvested wood products and risk assessment analysis as well as providing input regarding carbon model and leakage analysis. In addition, Offsetters established a monitoring plan to meet the requirements of FCOP and the BC EOR. Offsetters managed the validation and verification processes of all three project areas on behalf of the CFN and NCS. Offsetters utilized its proprietary Forest Carbon Asset Management System (“FCAMS”) to meet the long term data management requirements of the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project.
“We are very proud to have been so closely associated with the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project through our work with the talented and committed people who are the Coastal First Nations,” said Dr. James Tansey, CEO of Offsetters, “This verification marks a significant milestone for the Province, Coastal First Nations, Nanwakolas Council Society and carbon conservation, and demonstrates the ongoing commitment of our Province and its people to foster and develop a more sustainable, renewable economy – where the environment is a highly valued resource.”
James Tansey, Ph.D. President and CEO Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
About the Coastal First Nations
The Coastal First Nations is an alliance of First Nations on British Columbia’s North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii. The Coastal First Nations include Wuikinuxv Nation, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xaixais, Nuxalk Nation, Gitga’at, Metlakatla, Old Massett, Skidegate, and Council of the Haida Nation. Established in June 2011, the Great Bear Carbon Credit Limited Partnership’s purpose is to develop carbon credit projects within the Great Bear Rainforest and to market, sell and distribute the resulting offsets created.
About the Nanwakolas Council
The Nanwakolas Council is comprised of seven member First Nations whose traditional territories are located in the Northern Vancouver Island and adjacent South Central Coast areas of British Columbia. The members of the Nanwakolas Council involved in the South Central Coast Forest Carbon Project are the Mamalilikulla-Qwe’Qwa’Sot’Em First Nation, Tlowitsis First Nation, Da’naxda’xw Awaetlala First Nation, Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw First Nation and the K’omoks First Nation.
About Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
Offsetters is Canada’s largest and most diversified carbon management solutions company. Its team of industry leaders specializes in the origination, development and commercialization of high-quality carbon offset projects, and through a comprehensive offering of sustainability consultancy services Offsetters helps organizations understand, reduce and offset their climate impact. A merger of ERA Carbon Offsets and Offsetters, Offsetters is based in Vancouver, Canada and has worked with over 150 of the world’s most prestigious organizations including Aimia, Vancity, lululemon athletica, Catalyst Paper, Harbour Air, and HSE – Entega. Offsetters is publicly listed company on the Toronto Venture Exchange (TSX-V:COO) and in Frankfurt:9EA. For more information, please visit us at www.offsetters.ca.
For further information, please contact:
Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
Suite 1000 – 675 West Hastings Street,
Vancouver BC, V6B 1N2
h5.FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS: This document includes forward-looking statements as well as historical information. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the continued advancement of the company’s general business development, research development and the company’s development of forest-based carbon offsets. When used in this document, the words “anticipate”, “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intent”, “may”, “project”, “plan”, “should” and similar expressions may identify forward-looking statements. Although Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc. believes that their expectations reflected in these forward looking statements are reasonable, such statements involve risks and uncertainties and no assurance can be given that actual results will be consistent with these forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ from these forward-looking statements include fluctuations in the marketplace for the sale of carbon credits, the inability to implement corporate strategies, the ability to obtain financing and other risks disclosed in our filings made with Canadian Securities Regulators.
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