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Cambridge Centre for Carbon Credits (4C)

We launched the Cambridge Centre for Carbon Credits (4C) in early November 2021.  Our first goal is to scale up the supply of deforestation avoidance carbon credits in order to halt tropical deforestation as soon as possible. We are currently working on a prototype of a trusted nature based marketplace.

Our Approach

The Cambridge Centre for Carbon Credits (4C) is creating digital tools and a trusted, decentralized platform to help purchasers of carbon credits to confidently and directly fund trusted deforestation avoidance projects, bringing together corporate funders and conservationists via automated and transparent smart contracting tools.

  » Learn about our research

If you're a conservation organisation interested in using our digital carbon credits calculation platform to issue robust credits, please get in touch. We are currently operating on moist tropical forests, with a view to expanding out to other forests (seasonal dry, temperate, and coastal mangroves) in 2023.

If you're a Web3 developer who wants to help with the development or integration of our Tezos smart contracts, then please also get in touch. We will be deploying on the Tezos ghostnet in Summer 2022, with wider availability later in the year. Now is the best time to tell us about your carbon credit needs.

Latest news

Detectree2 - a new way to delineate individual tree crowns in tropical forests

23 May 2023

James Ball and colleagues have developed a computer vision method for delineating tree crowns in tropical forests from aerial RGB imagery, available as an open-source Python package.

First working paper for Tropical Moist Forest accreditation methodology now available

22 May 2023

This draft document now available on Cambridge Open Engage describes the methodology developed by 4C for estimating the number of credits to be issued to a project in the tropical moist forest (TMF) biome. It expands on the methodology outlined in the Cambridge Offset Working Group report , and forms the basis for how we...

Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater

5 May 2023

Carbon credits can be a valuable tool for climate change mitigation and forest conservation, but their success depends on improving their credibility. A letter to Science co-authored by 17 researchers from Cambridge and around the world.

The Global Challenge

The world is facing simultaneous biodiversity and climate crises. Pressure is mounting from governments and the general public to rapidly roll out a global programme of well-executed nature-based solutions to sequester several giga-tons of carbon each year and protect biodiversity.

Over 100 world leaders at COP26 pledged to end deforestation by 2030. Our urgent challenge is figuring out how to verify that deforestation solutions are working, and tracking the associated carbon credits used to offset necessary emissions.

Our Timeline

Q4 2021: Launch of 4C, research into permanence and additionality MRV and digital methodologies.

Q1 2022: Submission of Cambridge Offset Working Group report with 10 projects surveyed using our methodologies.  Started biodiversity quantification metrics alongside carbon, and participated in IC-VCM core carbon principles stakeholder meetings.

Q2 2022: University of Cambridge Offset Working Group approves our methodology for use in university offsets. Participation in Gold Standard digital working groups to establish cross-registry standards for our Tezos contracts.

Q1 2023: Launch of deforestation avoidance platform for University of Cambridge staff offset purchases, with portfolio projects available to all departments. Research, smart contracts and open source code made available for wider use on Tezos.

Q2 2023: Widening availability of digital MRV (measurement, reporting, verification) tools and our permanence/additionality methodologies, allowing analysis of more deforestation avoidance projects.