What are Approved Approaches?

An Approved Approach is a methodology or tool that is used in the quantification or justification of climate benefits, risk, additionality or monitoring data for a Plan Vivo project or prospective Plan Vivo project.


Who can use an Approved Approach?

Approved Approaches include applicability criteria, which define the scope of the methodology/tool and the type of projects that it is suitable for. Any project that would like to apply an Approved Approach must demonstrate that they meet these criteria.

If a suitable approved approach is not available, projects can develop or adopt their own approaches for estimating emissions and removals, and submit them to the Plan Vivo Foundation for approval. This can be done in the relevant sections of the PDD or separately. Plan Vivo projects are encouraged to make use of simple, low cost approaches where possible, although other methodologies can be considered.


List of Approved Approaches

Approved Approach type

Applicable project types

Applicable geographical area

Carbon pool/emission source included

Link to documentation

Additionality assessment All Global N/A Additionality Assessment
Estimation of emissions and removals (Baseline scenario; Project intervention) Afforestation; Reforestation; Agroforestry; Agricultural land management Global Above ground woody biomass; Below-ground woody biomass; Soil organic carbon; Biomass burning; Fertilizer application Small-Holder Agriculture Monitoring and Baseline Assessment (SHAMBA) methodology (for further support on SHAMBA, see the SHAMBA tool website)
Estimation of emissions and removals (baseline scenario) Prevention of deforestation Tropical/sub-tropical evergreen or semi-evergreen forests Above-ground woody biomass Estimating Reference Emission Levels
Estimation of emissions and removals (Baseline scenario; Project intervention; Leakage) REDD in community managed forests Global Above-ground woody biomass; Below-ground woody biomass Estimation of Climate benefits from REDD in community-managed forests
Assessing risk and quantifying non-permanence buffer allocation All Global N/A Assessing Risk and Setting the Risk Buffer
Automating Forest Carbon Quantification* Afforestation; Reforestation; Agroforestry  Tropical/ subtropical forests Above - ground woody biomass; Below-ground woody biomass  Automating Forest Carbon Quantification

*Please note: This approved approach is in the final stages of the review process. It will be approved pending a review of the accompanying software. 


Can I submit a new Approved Approach?

Approved approaches were applicable under the former Plan Vivo Carbon Standard (PV Climate) V4.0 (2013). Migration to V5.0 of PV Climate includes a move away from Plan Vivo's application of 'Approved Approaches' and a move towards the use of Methodologies that are compliant with the latest Methodology Requirements. Find out more here: 

PV Climate Methodologies >