Nature-Based Solutions with High Integrity Tackle Climate Change

With the UN Climate Change Conference (COP 26) commencing in Glasgow, Australia’s leading company delivering nature-based solutions, the Aboriginal Carbon Foundation (AbCF), believes high integrity carbon programs are essential for local employment and private sector investment for sustainable carbon economies to flourish.

AbCF CEO Rowan Foley said: “We have been recognised by the Australian Human Rights Commission as being best practice in the carbon industry for our strengths-based approach and the Department of Industry is interested in our work to potentially be used throughout the Indo-Pacific, including PNG, Solomons Islands and a range of other countries, because they see the need for a high integrity carbon scheme.”

“Simply just having a carbon credit and a carbon methodology, is not high integrity.”

“You actually need to do more than have just a basic program, you need a model to deliver a high integrity scheme where countries can actually manage their own programs using a peer to peer strength-based approach and not handing over control to international carbon companies.”


Mapoon ranger verifier Sarah Barkley and Jason Jia exploring the co-benefits of carbon farming with Kowanyama elder, John Clarke (right) during the Kowanyama carbon project verification.

The AbCF verification framework has been developed over two years of research and development, refining its philosophy and ensuring their strength-based approach was built on the international development sector ‘impact measurement’ best practice.

This provides accountability, independent and transparent verification of environmental, social and cultural outcomes associated with carbon farming.

Mr Foley said the verification of co-benefits means local jobs as verifiers are created, which also mitigates ‘green washing’, while creating a pathway for the private sector to invest in nature-based solutions like Community Credits and Farmer Credits in the voluntary market.

For the second year running the Commonwealth Bank, Australia’s largest bank, has signed up with AbCF as part of its commitment of carbon neutrality as well as the Australian Conservation Foundation, Planet Ark, Future Super, Sydney Opera House and the Carbon Market Institute our national industry body.

Mr Foley, who presented the work of the AbCF at the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015 as well as UNFCCC in Bonn Germany also 2015, said: “The experience and knowledge of the global south in this sector means First Nations can offer solutions to the global north, where the work we do here in Australia is actually leading the way.”


Rowan Foley presenting the work of the AbCF at the Paris Climate Agreement in 2015.

“One of our innovations is the Cultural Fire Credits, where we are working in collaboration with Firestick Alliance and the WWF which will be on the market by Christmas time,” Mr Foley said.

The Cultural Fire Credits program will reduce devastating bushfires and greenhouse gas emission by accessing 65,000 years of Traditional Knowledge, while simultaneously creating regional jobs and supporting traditional owners maintain connection to and management of country as it is tenure blind.

“Collaboration really is the key to our mutual success and ultimate survival. It is essential, if we get the philosophy right, and establish these collaborative relationships, which both take time and effort, then these programs will be picked up as they will be recognised as being truly best practice.” ENDS.

For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact: Rowan Foley CEO Aboriginal Carbon Foundation 0427 013 318 Or download a copy of the media release here.

© ABORIGINAL CARBON FOUNDATION 2021

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