Who buys your Carbon+ Credits from regenerative agriculture?

by Arlene Barclay | Sep 1, 2023

More and more companies are looking to support farmers’ transition to regenerative agriculture through the voluntary carbon market. This delivers a win-win solution for society, the environment and you as a farmer.

Still, you may be wondering: Who actually buys the carbon credits generated on your farm?

In this blog, we draw on conversations with Lucas van Doorn of CEEZER and Kathryn Flynn of Klimate, two platforms that feature Carbon+ Credits.

We’ll dive deep into the main players in the voluntary carbon market, the role of resellers, some concrete cases of end buyers, and why companies would invest in regenerative agriculture.

THE MAIN PLAYERS IN THE VOLUNTARY CARBON MARKET

The voluntary carbon market is a decentralised entity in which actors buy and sell carbon credits, a certificate that states one metric ton of CO2 has been removed or reduced from the atmosphere.

Generally speaking, four main players make up the machine which is the voluntary carbon market. This includes – but isn’t limited to – project developers, retailers and marketplaces, end buyers, and standard verifiers.

PROJECT DEVELOPERS

Develop, monitor and coordinate projects that generate carbon credits.

STANDARD VERIFIERS

Confirm that a particular project meets its emission reduction goals.

END BUYERS

Are companies or individuals looking to invest in climate action.

RETAILERS AND MARKETPLACES

Link supply with demand in the voluntary carbon market.

In the case of Carbon+ Credits, Climate Farmers is the project developer. Meanwhile, Klimate and CEEZER enable the connection between project developers and end buyers.

The voluntary carbon market has long been described as a wild-west. With a sea of complexity and fragmentation to sieve through, it can be difficult both for emission-reduction projects to take off and for end buyers to access high-quality credits. Klimate and CEEZER overcome these challenges, instead opening the door for synergy.

The organisations play an important role in connecting supply with demand, while also speeding up and simplifying the trade of carbon credits. As Lucas puts it:

“The voluntary carbon market is a complex space. Our mission is to make it as simple and transparent as possible for carbon credit buyers while maximising the impact of carbon removal initiatives.”

CEEZER AND KLIMATE: WHO THEY ARE

CEEZER was founded in 2021. The company has built the digital infrastructure to transform voluntary climate investment into highest-impact climate action. Ambitious organisations use CEEZER to screen, purchase, and manage their net-zero credit portfolios. Sourced directly from the primary market, based on verified data.

On the other hand, Klimate empowers responsible companies to tackle climate change by providing access to high-quality carbon removal projects through a portfolio-based approach. Their core purpose is to accelerate the development of carbon removal initiatives that deliver deep and meaningful impact.

WHO BUYS YOUR CARBON CREDITS?

The voluntary carbon market has exploded in recent years. Participation has increased significantly, with multinational corporations and individuals alike utilising it as a tool to meet their sustainability pledges.

But what does this mean in the context of Klimate and CEEZER, and more specifically, the buyer at the end of the chain?

Klimate provides carbon credits to an array of industries. One of the most prominent participants is the outdoor industry, which Kathryn states has been a leader when it comes to environmental responsibility. They also work with advertising agencies and travel organisations.

“What the companies we work with have in common is a forward-thinking mentality and strong commitment to sustainability.”

66° North is a company that has supported farmers on their transition to regenerative agriculture by purchasing Carbon+ Credits via Klimate.

66° North is a certified B-corp. This means they’ve voluntarily met the highest international standards for social and environmental responsibility. They have enacted a holistic sustainability strategy, mobilising a diverse suite of initiatives that cover ecological, economic and social value.

CEEZER’s primary target group on the buyer side is large companies that have set ambitious sustainability goals. Over 50 corporate customers across Europe and the US are actively using the platform to compensate for their carbon footprints, achieve their net-zero targets and manage extensive carbon credit portfolios.

To promote autonomy, project developers like Climate Farmers can also review buyers and exclude specific industries.

A TWO-WAY PARTNERSHIP

While there are plenty of carbon credit project developers, marketplaces and retailers on the market, their values and standards can vary significantly.

CEEZER and Klimate alike are guided by integrity and genuine impact. They each have a lot of criteria that need to be met when screening potential carbon removal projects. But as Lucas highlights, Climate Farmers ticked all the boxes:

“The independent verification of Climate Farmers’ self-developed methodology was a green flag. Throughout the screening process, we were very impressed by Climate Farmers’ level of transparency and ability to deliver detailed answers regarding their modelling approach.”

 Partnering with retailers is a two-way street. For us, finding value-aligned companies that look beyond carbon and promote emission reductions as well as removals was imperative. Klimate and CEEZER align almost seamlessly in this regard.

WHY WOULD SOMEONE BUY CARBON CREDITS FROM REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE?

High quality food production — carrot icon
High quality food production
Soil organic<br />
carbon capture — Icon
Soil organic carbon capture
Amplified resilience against extreme<br />
weather — icon
Amplified resilience against extreme weather
Soil health — Icon
Soil health
farm profitability — Icon
Increased farm profitability making the family business more attractive to future generations
Biodiversity — Icon
Biodiversity
Animal welfare
Animal welfare
Better water quality & retention
Better water quality & retention

Demand for high-quality carbon credits from regenerative agriculture has skyrocketed. Given soils are the second largest carbon sink on earth, it’s easy to understand why.

But as Kathryn highlights, the benefits of regenerative agriculture go far beyond carbon. From flood and drought prevention to high-quality food production, water retention, and ecosystem restoration, these co-benefits are one of its greatest strengths. As Lucas puts it: “Soil carbon credits give buyers a lot of bang for their buck”.

“There are so many co-benefits attached to regenerative agriculture. It’s much more than just carbon sequestration. And there are so many services that farmers deliver to our society. So if we want to help them achieve that, we should put a price on it and pay them for those services.”

— Lucas van Doorn

 Kathryn points out that these co-benefits add enormous value to carbon credits. Buyers can’t see carbon sequestration, but they can see the value of regenerative agriculture manifest for farmers and wider society.

CLOSING REMARKS

To unlock the immense potential of regenerative agriculture, we need enough farmers willing to shift their operations and enough financial assistance to make it possible.

Government policy isn’t where it needs to be. Farmers are facing pressing challenges now — challenges that can only be mitigated by adapting farm operations.

Our Carbon+ Program equips you with the necessary tools to transition your land. By making the change, you’ll be significantly better positioned down the line.

Do you want support for implementing regenerative agriculture?

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