Restoration of Degraded Deltaic Wetlands of the Mississippi Delta
The American Carbon Registry (ACR), has certified the very first methodology, funded by Entergy Corporation and developed by Tierra Resources, for creating and monetizing carbon offset credits from a broad range of wetland restoration activities. This methodology provides the guidelines on how to calculate, report, and verify greenhouse gas reductions for the creation of wetland carbon credits. The document, “Restoration of Degraded Deltaic Wetlands of the Mississippi Delta,” provides a rigorous scientific framework for wetland restoration project development, and becomes the foundation for third-party validation and verification in accordance with standardized and transparent market practices.
The methodology is unique in several respects. It is the first carbon offset methodology in the world to target deltaic wetland restoration and the first to use a modular format, which provides flexibility for numerous types of wetland restoration techniques and facilitates methodology expansion. As perhaps the most important innovation, it is the first wetland restoration methodology to include hydrologic management of nutrient rich waters as a restoration technique, incorporating options for diversion of river water into wetlands, introduction of nonpoint source runoff into wetlands, and discharge of treated municipal effluent into wetlands. Afforestation is also an included wetland restoration techniques.
Based on Tierra’s findings on the GHG emissions that occur during wetland loss the methodology was revised from its original publication in order to include activities that prevent wetland loss. This may lead to more funding for coastal restoration.
As a first step towards achieving the massive global GHG mitigation potential from wetland restoration, the methodology is expected to be expanded in the future for wetland restoration in other regions and other wetland restoration practices.