Baskahegan sells carbon offsets from Maine forest

The project comprises over 86,000 acres of hardwood and conifer forest in northern Washington County

Baskahegan Co., a Forest Stewardship Council® certified forest, recently announced the sale of carbon offset credits from the Bluesource – Baskahegan Improved Forest Management Project in Brookton, Maine. In 2018, the project generated nearly 700,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emission reductions. The offset credits were sold into the California cap-and-trade market to help regulated entities meet greenhouse gas reduction requirements and into the voluntary market to help corporations achieve sustainability goals.

The project comprises over 86,000 acres of hardwood and conifer forest in northern Washington County. A generation of careful forest management has produced a standing volume of trees well in excess of average stocking levels in Maine. 

“Managing our forests to reduce the risk of catastrophic climate change is a reflection of the family’s values and completely consistent with our long-term objectives for the forest,” said Baskahegan President Roger Milliken. “In addition to providing sustainable annual harvests of valuable timber, the protection of wildlife habitats and the provision of clean water, we are happy that our management also contributes to the reduction of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.”

Patrick Strauch, executive director of the Maine Forest Products Council (MFPC), applauded the move by Baskahegan, which is a member of the council. 

“The Council includes a diversity of landowners and manufacturers all focused on growing trees and making wood products that sequester carbon from the atmosphere,” Strauch said. “We concur with this recent statement by the U.N. International Panel on Climate Change: ‘In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fiber or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit.’”

A recent statement by the U.N. International Panel on Climate Change: ‘In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fiber or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit.’”

Bluesource completed the carbon calculations on the property and led the project through a series of standards, regulatory bodies and third-party auditors including the American Carbon Registry, S&A Carbon, LLC, and ultimately the California Air Resources Board. Bluesource also facilitated the sale of credits to ensure revenue was generated from Baskahegan’s sustainable actions.

“The Baskahegan project is an excellent example of how the California market is incentivizing landowners across the country to manage their land in ways that benefit air, water and wildlife, as opposed to solely focusing on timber revenues. Bluesource is proud to have partnered with Baskahegan to make this carbon project such a success,” said Josh Strauss, Bluesource vice president of Blue Source.

Bluesource is a market-maker, advisor and capital source for environmental markets. For more than 20 years, Bluesource has been a leader in climate change and low carbon environmental products and services.

“Maine’s private forest lands bring many benefits to our state, but their importance to the climate is often overlooked,” said Mark Berry, direct of the Nature Conservancy’s forest program in Maine. “Baskahegan’s forest carbon offset project underscores their long-term commitment to forest stewardship, and will help ensure the sustainability of forest management and timber harvest on this property for the next 100 years.”

Baskahegan is a family company dedicated to the long-term stewardship to develop the natural potential of Baskahegan’s forest to produce value for both present and future generations.

“I think about my three young kids whenever I am on Baskahegan land,” said John Manganello, Baskahegan vice president and a fourth-generation owner. “It is good knowing that this landscape will be managed to benefit future generations of all stakeholders. This project indicates our continued commitment to sustainable forestry while enabling Maine’s greatest natural resource be part of the needed climate change solution for years to come.” The company will celebrate its 100th year in 2020.