What is climate benefit estimation?

Projects that want to receive Plan Vivo certificates (PVCs) must benefit the climate by lowering greenhouse gas emissions and/or enhancing carbon sinks as a result of project interventions. They must take steps to quantify these climate benefits climate  benefits  in  tonnes  of  carbon  dioxide  equivalent  (tCO2e)  which were reduced  or  removed  from  the  atmosphere  as  a result  of  project  interventions.

In each eligible intervention/activity applied by the project, climate benefits are estimated by comparing baseline emissions (emissions in the absence of the project) against removals after project intervention, minus any emissions from leakage.

Expected climate benefits and the approaches for their estimation are included within a Project Design Document (PDD). Each project must therefore:

  • Create a PDD outlining expected climate benefits and the approaches used.
  • Submit the PDD for effectiveness review by the Plan Vivo Foundation and experts from the Plan Vivo Technical Advisory Group.
  • Monitor activities and impacts to demonstrate the expected climate benefits are being achieved.



Guidance on estimating climate benefits

You can find all the guidance on estimating climate benefits in the Climate Benefit Estimation Guidance and Resources. Information is also provided on the following webpages:

Further guidance
Baseline Scenario A description of the most likely land use scenario in the project area(s) if interventions aren’t introduced.

Estimation of emissions and removals

A comparison of the baseline scenario and the expected climate benefit of the project interventions with regards to emissions and removals.

Risks of non-delivery and reversals

An assessment of the risks of non-delivery, and an appropriate risk buffer to be applied.

Crediting systems and monitoring

A description of the crediting systems that projects can apply, and information about monitoring requirements.

Approved Approaches

A list of methodologies or tools that can in the quantification or justification of climate benefits, risk, additionality or monitoring data for a Plan Vivo project or prospective Plan Vivo project. A project may choose to apply one or several of these when creating their PDD and technical specifications.


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