See our frequently asked questions below
WHAT IS CO2E?
CO2e stands for carbon dioxide equivalent. It can include CO2, NO2, CH4, and other gasses.
WHAT IS CARBON SEQUESTRATION?
Carbon sequestration is the process where trees naturally capture and store up carbon dioxide. In permanent native forests the trees release carbon dioxide as they breakdown which is re-captured by replacement trees self seeding. In exotic forests carbon dioxide is lost back into the atmosphere during harvesting and when the harvested wood finishes it's commercial life.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CARBON NEUTRAL, CLIMATE NEUTRAL,
NET ZERO CARBON EMISSIONS, CLIMATE POSITIVE, & CARBON POSITIVE?
Carbon Neutral, Climate Neutral, & Net-Zero Carbon Emissions are all similar ways of saying your CO2 emissions verses your CO2 offsets balances out at zero. Climate Positive & Carbon Positive means that your CO2 emissions are less than your CO2 offsets.
Here's the defined terms below:
Carbon Neutral means all associated carbon dioxide created into the atmosphere by the individual or organisation's activities is also equality offset.
Climate Neutral means all greenhouse gases created are equality offset by the individual or organisation's activity, and all other related environmental & climate related impacts are removed.
Net Zero Carbon Emissions means all carbon dioxide created into the atmosphere by the individual or organisation's activities is equality offset to zero following climate science advice.
Climate Positive means an individual or organisation's activities that benefits the environment by removing more greenhouse gases than it creates
Carbon Positive means an individual or organisation's activities that positively benefit the environment by removing more carbon dioxide than it creates. We measure carbon dioxide equivalent which includes CO2, NO2, CH4.
The main difference between the terms is the scope covered, with some covering only CO2 while others are broader to include all GHG (CO2, NO2, CH4), as well as wider environmental impacts.
WHAT IS GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) PROTOCOL
Greenhouse gas protocol is a global standard used to measure and manage greenhouse gas emissions.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PURCHASING CARBON CREDITS AND PURCHASING NATIVE TREES?
Native trees are planted by selected & approved local community or charity organisations. The cost of the tree covers the sourcing, ground preparation, fertiliser, planting, & maintenance. Research from New Zealand native tree charities allows the offset quantity to attributed from the plantings.
Carbon Credits are purchased through the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) which unfortunately exotic pine plantations are heavily involved in the carbon credit creation. Some New Zealand industries are obligated to file returns and purchase from the ETS rather than purchase native trees. More can be found at
If your industry does not fall into the ETS obligated criteria then you can choose how you voluntarily offset your carbon emissions through one of our native tree projects or by purchasing carbon credits on the open market. Provide proof of the carbon credit offset to us - offsets must be from New Zealand sources.
Research shows the negative effects of pine plantations for our biodiversity and environment therefore Carbon Positive suggests offsetting with native trees where possible.
CAN I PURCHASE TREES FROM ANY NZ SOURCE TO OFFSET?
Because some sources can be unreliable any externally purchased trees cannot be used towards carbon positive certification offsets. To achieve carbon positive certification we require clients to offset in one of two ways; through one of our native tree projects, or by purchasing carbon credits on the open ETS market in New Zealand.
A common question we get asked is why not just plant trees at our commercial property to offset? Planting trees at your commercial property will offset carbon emissions temporarily however at some point in the future your business might move premises or rebuild and this is where there is no guarantee that the trees won’t be removed which then releases CO2 back into the environment (through green waste disposal or chipped mulch breaking down).
HOW MANY NATIVE NZ TREES NEED TO PLANTED FOR A TONNE OF CARBON SEQUESTRATION TO OCCUR?
New Zealand research shows that 2.3 native trees can sequester a Tonne of CO2e emissions over the first 50 years. Growth rates slow after 50 years with trees that breakdown being replaced by the regrowth in the same forest. Native trees planted must be able to reach a minimum of 5m high to be classed as suitable varieties otherwise they full into the shrub category with lower sequestration rates.
CAN I PURCHASE CARBON CREDITS FROM OVERSEAS SOURCE?
Carbon Positive does not accept overseas offsets for our carbon positive certification. Best practice is that you offset carbon emissions in the same country that you create carbon emissions.
WHY DO CARBON EMISSIONS NEED TO BE MEASURED & OFFSET ANNUALLY?
Reporting annually allows organisations to set a measurable benchmark, identify any new inefficiencies & check the progress of their carbon reduction targets. Annual reporting looks at the last 12 months of actual measured emissions rather than any future emissions that still have the potential to fluctuate. As you more forward into a new 12 month period you are creating new emissions (even if less than the previous year's emissions) that haven't yet been accounted for & should be offset during the following year's carbon calculations. We recommend using data from the latest completed financial year or recently completed calendar year.