Forestry Partners is a not-for-profit social enterprise, founded in 2019 to bring together leading industry figures alongside climate, forestry and biodiversity experts to create significant areas of new native woodland in Ireland. Our targets for year one are to achieve an ambitious strategic plan: to reforest 1% of the land area of Ireland, offsetting c. 28 million metric tons of CO2, while creating tens of thousands of acres of new woodland wildlife habitats. All the forests we plant will also be open to the public for the benefit of the local and national community.
Ireland is falling significantly behind target on commitments made under the 2015 Paris Agreement. According to the 2019 Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI), Ireland is the worst performer in Europe and among the worst performers globally.
Ireland also has the lowest level of forestry cover in Europe – less than 11% versus an average of 40%. The forest cover that we do have consists of a majority of short-life commercial forestry that is non-native. While this brings important economic benefits, it doesn’t create the positive environmental and biodiversity impact that permanent native woodland does.
We believe that by working together Irish business can make a significant contribution to improving Ireland’s performance through the creation of large areas of new native woodlands. Our plan will have meaningful impact:
- Capture carbon dioxide from the atmosphere
- Protect & restore native Irish woodlands
- Foster biodiversity and create vital wildlife habitats
Our aim is to make it as straightforward as possible for organisations to understand the emissions that they are responsible for and to offset those emissions by committing to helping to fund woodland creation. We provide everything needed to achieve this – from online tools to help you determine your level of emissions, to a fully customised planting and carbon offsetting plan for your organisation, and education and training materials and support to help communicate the low-carbon message internally and to a wider external audience.
We follow a simple process:
- We provide simple online tools to capture data on emissions/activity
- An emissions score is provided and a commitment to offset those emissions is made
- We plant the woodland and certify the offsets created
- We provide co-branding materials that can be used to share details of the project
- We share access to educational resources to enable future emissions reduction
Forestry Partners manages all the planning, permits, planting and ongoing forestry management for every project. All planting is audited by third party foresters and results will be published. We also believe in the importance of education and awareness building to focus on building consensus and modifying behaviour to reduce emissions where possible. Together we want to not only offset emissions but work to reduce future emissions and minimise the offsets required.
We are committed to achieving the highest international standards of forestry management and certification of our activity. In order to achieve these standards, all forest cover we plant must be:
- Permanent – we will use a forestry management practice known as Continuous Cover Forestry (CCF) – our forests will never be cut down.
- Verifiable – we will work with leading national experts as third-party auditors to verify what we are doing and the impact we are having.
- Additional – none of the activity we are doing would otherwise happen, so it can all be considered additional to what would otherwise be the case.
Research by Imperial College London and the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance (ICROA) found that for every one ton of carbon offset, $664 of benefits are delivered to communities, infrastructure and biodiversity.
This initiative aligns with seven of the seventeen UN Strategic Development Goals – specifically:
- Goal 3: Good Health and Well-being
- Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
- Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
- Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
- Goal 13: Climate Action
- Goal 14: Life Below Water
- Goal 15: Life on Land