ALLCOT and Conservation International Colombia, an alliance with a strong sustainable impact in benefit of the ecosystems and communities in Colombia.
Although Colombia has one of the worldwide highest indexes of biodiversity, it has decreased by 18% during the last years. The biggest threat is the natural habitat’s loss due to agriculture and cattle industries. It is our responsibility to protect the ecosystems and to fight against the climate change that affects much of the national territory, especially to the underprivileged communities.
ALLCOT, with more than 10 years of experience, develops worldwide sustainable projects providing its clients and collaborators with the knowledge and management expertise of initiatives aimed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) to actively fight against the climate change crisis. We establish a commitment and therefore create alliances with other companies that, like us, appreciate the environment.
Conservation International Foundation (CI) works to highlight and maintain the benefits that nature provides to humanity. From the start, CI has worked to protect more than 5 million square km (2.3 square miles) of land and ocean across more than 70 countries. Currently, it is established among 29 countries and has 2 thousand partners around the world.
Based on a solid foundation of science, partnership, and field demonstration, CI empowers societies to take care of nature, global diversity, and humanity’s well-being in a responsible and sustainable manner.
Thanks to the common values and the interest of both in recovering and working in favor of nature, ALLCOT and Conservation International Colombia join forces with the target of executing Sustainable Socio-Environmental Projects, aligned under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of United Nations, that have a strong impact in the conservation of the environment, adaptation to the climate crisis and the communities development.
“Today more than ever it is high time to act. Act with significant actions against the imperatives of the environmental crises and consequential social impacts. Thanks to the alliance with CI, our shared values, and long-term vision, we can accomplish our goals and commitments within Colombia” said Alexis L. Leroy, ALLCOT’s CEO.
“The development of carbon market in Colombia represents a great opportunity to consolidate conservation and sustainability processes of maximizing the benefits over strategic ecosystems and its communities. The experience of CI working on socio-environmental projects in the territory, added to that of ALLCOT in the design of GHG reduction projects, will allow the development and implementation of high-quality projects” says Fabio Arjona, vice president of the Colombia Conservation International program.
Written by Natalia Rodrigo, Group Sustainability Technical Manager.
Recent studies on the fashion industry state that this sector highly needs to improve sustainability performance. Although it is true that most fashion brands are aware of their environmental and social impact, only less than half of them have started to take real action. In addition to this, fashion companies are not yet implementing sustainable solutions fast enough to effectively counteract all the negative impacts this hastily growing industry has.
Current patterns of production and consumption in the fashion industry endanger natural resources and generate a loss of biodiversity. Furthermore, it cannot be discarded increasing rates of carbon emissions, water consumption, chemical use, and waste generation. Considering that, our planet has already overcome its safe operating boundaries, restrictions on one or more of its key input factors cannot be discarded, making it difficult to grow at the projected rate of a predicted increase of 60% by 2030.
In addition to this, other non-environmental challenging issues such as animal welfare, lack of transparency and negative image, for instance, pressuring society to live up to body ideals, cannot be consigned to oblivion.
It is a universally acknowledged truth that the fashion industry is regarded as a powerhouse for global development. This point can be illustrated by the position it has as one of the world’s largest consumer industries. As a result, this sector imperatively needs to perform differently. Far away from integrating profit and growth, fashion can provide additional value towards its products, resulting in tangible benefits across society as well as the world economy.
Fashion, talent, and creativity always go hand in hand. This means that fashion has a far-reaching savoir-faire, is active on social media and counts with enough leverage to successfully work on its own transformation.
Positively surprisingly, the fashion industry has already embarked on the challenging target of raising consumers ´awareness, undertaking for real and effective improvements, conforming wide networks dedicated to environmental, social, and transparent goals.
In addition to all of this, targeted investments made on technology as well as labor conditions and productivity, achievable heretofore will allow fashion brands to counterbalance current pressure. This point can be illustrated by current initiatives on converting textile waste into raw materials using advanced recycling techniques; reduce water and energy consumption due to innovative technology implementation as well as to integrate waste management techniques across production and distribution operations.
Taking all these new specialized strategies into account, a sneaking suspicion that acting differently nowadays as well as eagle eyeing for innovative solutions will provide these companies with a unique opportunity to manage and make certainly profitable growth forge ahead.
On the other hand, if no prompt action is taken, fashion brands will strain themselves to downgrade average unitary prices, deeper depreciation levels, rising costs, as well as resource shortage among the value chain. Undoubtedly, this industry is nowadays based on a linear ‘one-way street’ of take, make, and waste.
As a result, chain reactions across fashion are quite predictable. Considering current projections for growth in energy prices and salaries by 2030, fashion brands will suffer a decline in benefits if they still opt for business, as usual, consequently pledging their long-term resourcefulness.
In order to effectively address the rising environmental and social pressure, as well as to strike with the continuous industry boost, this sector is called to assess its footprint. In order to determine the industry’s environmental, social, and ethical gaps, ALLCOT helps the fashion industry to successfully identify the level of sustainability at each stage of the value chain. This strategy empowers companies to identify KPI´s and raise red flags for the weakest of them. The main objective of this effort is to build-up knowledge, transparency, and overall sustainability.
Without any doubt, this challenge in patterns ‘turnover also aims to establish the basis for prospective remodeling, investment channeling and innovation.
In conclusion, if the fashion industry does not take prompt and fast action on sustainability performance, its contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will not be significant, putting into high risk the commitments of the Paris Agreement and therefore the Agenda 2030. As a result, it is urgently needed to place environmental, social, and ethical improvements as an indispensable task within management’s agendas.
The fashion industry has the iron in the fire to empower large-scale environmental and social change. Integrating more energy-efficient and conscientious use of limited resources, fair working conditions, as well as progressing on upstream and downstream issues along the value chain are key strategies to make this change a reality.
ALLCOT is changing the change…
By Andrés Melendro, Sustainability Consultant.
ALLCOT is currently developing a REDD + project (Reduction of Co2 emissions from deforestation and forest degradation) in the south of the Department of Meta, in Colombia. The project area is located in a transition zone between the Amazon and the Orinoco bassins. In the vicinity of the project, the area is the La Macarena Special Management Area, within which are included four Natural Parks. Unfortunately, during the first weeks of 2020 there have been numerous fires. La Macarena and Tinigua National Parks have been particularly affected. According to the Environmental Information System for the Colombian Amazon (SIAT-AC), during the first two months of the year there have been around 7000 heat points in the department of Meta, almost all in the municipality of La Macarena.
According to the inventory of Greenhouse Gases (GHG) established by the IDEAM (Institute of Hydrology, Meteorology and Environmental Studies) of Colombia, in 2015, the AFOLU (agriculture, forestry and other land use) accounted for 55% of Colombia’s total emissions. In other words, AFOLU is more determinant than transportation, industry and energy combined. These figures highlight the importance of the forestry sector in Colombia’s climate change mitigation strategy and the severity of current fires.
The drivers and perpetrators for this wave of deforestation are not entirely clear. There are several hypotheses, namely the economic interests of moving the agricultural frontier forward, for both licit and illicit crops; the benefits of converting forest into grassland for livestock; but also, a few studies hypotheses related to speculation and hoarding of “cleared” land.
In the eyes of the Government, the dissent of the extinct FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) guerrilla are the main actors in this process and their objective is the planting of coca plants. However, according to serious journalistic investigations, large landowners are also promoting the arrival of settlers in the Natural Parks and financing deforestation. Degrading the environmental value of the land, located both inside and outside of protected areas, by cutting down the forest and later introducing livestock, is a perverse strategy to one day trigger the legalization and subsequent valuation of these lands. Settlers degrade, occupy the land and further sell it at low cost to illegal land hoarders. These two actors sign purchase agreements of unduly occupied vacant lots, and over time they manage to validate and finally authenticate these certificates in notaries.
This vicious circle explains the fires that today destroy the same forests that our REDD + project aims to protect. The current conjuncture of forest degradation both within and outside protected areas highlights the importance of promoting voluntary schemes such as REDD + since monitoring and control are not enough. The work that ALLCOT carries out through its emissions reduction projects complements enforcement carried by the environmental authorities and the operations of the Military Forces such as Operation “Artemisa”.
By offering financial incentives to avoid deforestation in the Southern Meta, ALLCOT’s REDD+ project supports local communities in their productive reorientation. ALLCOT works with them to define the most viable sustainable productive projects and uses the income derived from the sale of carbon credits serves to finance them. Whether through technical assistance, purchasing materials, building infrastructure or structuring business plans and marketing strategies, REDD+ represents the opportunity to reconcile local economic development and climate change mitigation.
Each hectare burned in the area of influence of our projects is one extra reason to continue protecting the forest through the REDD+ scheme.
Proyecto Redd+, Sur del Meta
“Quantification of SDGs to implement Article 6 of the Paris Agreement”
From December 2th to 13th, the UN’s Climate Change Conference will take place at IFEMA, Madrid’s convention center. This event will include the 25th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), also known as COP25, the 15th meeting of the parties for the Kyoto Protocol, and the second meeting of the parties for the Paris Agreement.
ALLCOT will be attending this high-level conference, which is an opportunity to give enhanced visibility to the work that is being carried out about climate change.
Sergi Cuadrat, our Group Chief Technical Officer, will be presenting a side event called “Quantification of SDGs to implement Article 6 of the Paris Agreement”.
ALLCOT is developing an open-source SDG Quantification Methodology which aims to measure the co-benefits of emission reduction projects on the SDGs. This requires measuring SDG baselines at the local scale and tracking progress. This operational tool will be applied to development activities to ensure a fair carbon price.
- El Hadji Mbaye Diagne, Vice-Chair of the CDM Executive Board.
- Margaret Kim, Chief Executive Officer of Gold Standard.
- David Antonioli, Chief Executive Officer of Verra.
Venue: BusinessHub Side Event room. (IFEMA – Madrid)
Day: December 10th.
Hour: 14:00 to 15:30.
It will be a pleasure for us to participate in this great event and share it with all the attendants. See you there!
Written by Alexis Leroy, CEO ALLCOT
Last month, the climate change community met in New York City for Climate Week. Numerous organizations hosted events around the city on the sidelines of official United Nations events, making Climate Week one of the largest climate gatherings of the year.
I attended, among other events, the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) “Carbon Forum North America”, held at the iconic Explorers Club headquarters in midtown.
The Explorers Club is an historic establishment that dates back to the early 20th century, when explorers such as Edmund Hillary, Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt and Charles Lindbergh would regale members with tales of extreme conditions, new species of animals – some are still displayed in the club – and their efforts to push back the boundaries of human knowledge and achievement.
I like to think it was no accident that IETA chose The Explorers Club to host their annual event. Climate change is unknown territory: we are charting a new path into the realm of changing weather patterns and mankind’s ability both to prevent and to adapt to a changing environment.
And it also occurred to me that what groups involved in climate change are doing is very much akin to exploration. Not only does our changing climate represent the new territory, but the efforts that nations are making to prevent catastrophic climate change are also an entirely new way to tackle environmental problems.
To apply market mechanisms to solve an environmental problem may seem contradictory, but it speaks to one of the most powerful forces that drives mankind: its ambition, its pursuit of security and knowledge and its desire to survive. All of these are represented in market systems, and they were also forces that drove the great explorers.
Recently, a study was published that showed how close cooperation among nations in linking their carbon pricing systems could bring down the cost of reducing emissions by as much as $250 billion a year by 2030. Efficiencies of scale, as well as closely aligned regulations, are critical to achieving these cost reductions.
This is ground-breaking research that highlights how the power of markets can be used to achieve a global good. And the idea of markets for environmental outcomes is not even new: The United States pioneered the use of markets for environmental goals when it developed the first emissions trading systems for Sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions from coal-fired power plants in the 1970s.
This study explores the farther reaches of what may be possible if nations can agree on a clear and transparent set of standards and regulations for countries to use when setting up their carbon markets. The UN negotiations in Santiago this December will be critical to bringing to reality the exploratory work of work such as this study.
This research demonstrates how important it is that nations, as well as interest groups in the environmental space, consider the role of business. There are plenty of NGOs advocating for practical solutions to the problem of climate change, but not many of them address the concerns of the business community.
It’s not heresy to say this: whatever we may think of the global economy and its presence in our lives, business is among the most important constituencies that make up society. And as such, it has a role to play in addressing our problems.
Within the climate sphere alone, green NGOs advocate for solutions that consider science, human rights, climate justice, gender, youth, and workers. Why would it be seen as wrong that an NGO should help craft effective, efficient market mechanism regulations so that business can fully play its role?
Some may say that governments simply need to regulate carbon emissions out of existence, by imposing a tax on carbon dioxide. There are many parts of the world where that happens. Real explorers, however, are looking for ways that guarantee the environmental outcome, rather than government tax receipts.
Capitalism is often seen as incompatible with climate action; just look at the protests that are growing by the day around the world. The role of pioneers and explorers like IETA is to make the two work together, speeding up climate action by ensuring that there’s a real incentive to take action.