The Plan Vivo Objective

We believe that action should be taken to aid communities on the forefront of the climate crisis. This is achieved by applying the "Plan Vivo" concept of:

  1. Relieving poverty by offering sustainable livelihoods for communities whose environments have been degraded.
  2. Restoring and protecting environments so to help protect communities against climate change and provide a variety of sustainable development benefits.
  3. Building local capacity through the transfer of knowledge, skills and resources to developing countries.

In this process, our projects capture carbon from the atmosphere. This can be claimed by projects as Plan Vivo Certificates, which can be sold by projects to help fund their operations and bring on new participants. 60% of income from the sale of Plan Vivo Certificates goes directly to the participants.


What we do for projects

A tailored standard

  • Experienced Plan Vivo is a certification body that certifies projects against the Plan Vivo Standard – a tried and tested framework, developed with over 20 years of experience, for community and smallholder land-use and forestry projects that strive to make a difference.
  • Flexible It is crucial that PES projects are designed to fit with local circumstances, meaning the Standard is designed to be flexible and practical to use. It is designed to work in different geographic, socio-economic and legal contexts, and has been developed in close consultation with its users, including projects, purchasers of Plan Vivo Certificates and other stakeholders.
  • Applicable across landscapes – Plan Vivo projects follow a ‘whole landscape’ approach; they are normally made up of multiple participants and interventions, depending on the needs and priorities of the communities involved. This means that projects can be made up of a single area or many separate project areas (e.g. many smallholdings) across a landscape, and can expand programmatically over time.


Opening new funding sources

By quantifying ecosystem services, demonstrating good governance and measuring performance every year, certified projects can issue Plan Vivo Certificates (PVCs). Each PVC represents one tonne of CO2e emission reductions, alongside other non-carbon benefits (climate adaptation, biodiversity protection, water provision, etc.), which can then be sold on the voluntary carbon market to generate funds for project activities.


International recognition

Plan Vivo is internationally recognised as the leading Standard for community land-use projects. Certification under Plan Vivo demonstrates a that a project is sustainable over the long-term, truly benefits people's livelihoods and provides vital climate and environmental benefits. This allows Plan Vivo-certified projects to get the attention they deserve, whether that be through funding, partnerships or international awards. It is for this reason that some projects, who have had less interest in carbon financing, have sought Plan Vivo as a governance mechanism. So far, Plan Vivo projects have won 3 UN Equator Prizes and 1 UN Seed Award.


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What we do for buyers & funders

For buyers of PVCs

We ensure that Plan Vivo Certificates (PVCs) represent real, additional and verifiable emission reductions, whereby 1 PVC equates to 1 tonne of CO2 sequestered or mitigated. Unlike many other carbon credits, PVCs also represent a vast array of other co-benefits, such as poverty alleviation, gender equality, climate adaptation, biodiversity protection, water provision. We also ensure that at least 60% if income that a project receives, from the sale of a PVC, goes directly to the project participants. This means that our projects directly help climate-sensitive communities and contribute to a range of UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

For other funders

Plan Vivo acts as a governance mechanism, ensuring that certified projects are of the highest quality for Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) processes, community participation, environmental protection, and involvement of marginalised groups. These are all matters covered by the safeguarding mechanisms within the Plan Vivo Standard and checked by regular third-party audits.


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The Plan Vivo Foundation

The Plan Vivo Foundation is a Charity, registered in Scotland, that applies the Plan Vivo concept and upholds projects to the Plan Vivo Standard– a tried and tested framework for community land use and forestry projects that strive to make a difference. By doing so, we help projects provide benefits to communities and the environment, and provide assurances to buyers of Plan Vivo certificates that emission reductions represent real, additional and verifiable environmental benefits.