26 February 2015
WILMINGTON, N.C. (February 26, 2014) – Green Assets, Inc., a leading forest carbon offset developer, announced today the completion of the first-ever compliance-grade Avoided Conversion carbon offset project in the United States. Their Middleton Place project received California Air Resources Board Offset Credits (ARBOCs) for the conservation of more than 3,700 acres of pristine southern coastal habitat near Charleston, S.C.
The Green Assets-Middleton Place partnership represents the first and only Avoided Conversion project to be issued offset credits by the California Air Resources Board (ARB) for use in the state’s compliance market. Avoided Conversion projects prevent forestland from being converted to non-forestland use by dedicating the property to continuous forest cover.
This initial issuance of credits by the ARB amounts to 250,342 carbon credits. Using the EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator, these credits offset the annual electricity use of over 60% of the households in the city of Charleston.
“Green Assets is truly honored to partner with Middleton in designing and implementing this historic project,” said Chris Newton, CEO of Green Assets. “We’re proud to be the first company to earn this designation from the State of California, and we look forward to helping other landowners across the country realize the economic and environmental benefits that the ARB program offers.”
The Middleton property holds extraordinary historical importance for this region of South Carolina and the U.S. Recognized as a National Historic Landmark, Middleton Place is home to America’s oldest landscaped gardens. The adjacent, privately held forestland incorporated into the newly established carbon offset project was formerly an agricultural parcel.
“We are thrilled to complete this carbon project,” said June Duell, part owner of the Middleton Woodlands. “The positive economic impact ensures that future generations will have an income stream from the property while allowing us to fulfill our mission of environmental sustainability and historic preservation.”
According to Middleton Woodlands Manager Colby Hollifield, “The ARB process demands experts who can navigate the program’s rigorous quantification and inventory methodologies to create high-quality forest carbon offsets. That’s what we wanted, and Green Assets provided a turnkey solution.”