Dr Satyanarayanan, founder of Veda Climate Change Solutions Limited (VCCSL), is making money from selling timber from the sustainably harvested trees to JK Paper Mills and will soon make more funds from the trees for observing the carbon. VCCSL is developing a network of tree planting operations to promote livelihood creation across six rural districts with high tribal populations, low literacy, minimal employment opportunities, and few natural resources.
The mill provides farmers with saplings at a subsidized rate and trains them to grow and maintain the trees. The farmers then sell the mature timber to JK Paper Mills, generating an additional 10-20 percent on their earnings. At the same time, VCCSL assesses the wood for both voluntary and certified carbon credits that can be sold on the global carbon market, generating a second income stream for the farmers. As the cost of carbon in the market rises, so too will the benefits gained by these rural farmers and their families.
This model could include not only paper mills, but also construction, furniture, and biofuels, as well as the creation of ‘green’ fuel for other local economic activities.
The tree saplings, which include eucalyptus and Casuarina, are carefully bred and selected for their suitability to local conditions, providing benefits such as drought resistance and protection against high winds.
VCCSL acts as the intellectual support partner for the venture, working with carefully identified local industries and communities to ensure that the value created at the base of the supply chain extends fully into the global market in an effective and sustainable way.
By 2030, India is projected to account for some 5 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions, generating an estimated 1.4 metric tons per person, according to the International Energy Agency. The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), a Delhi-based non-governmental organization, estimates that emissions will grow at nearly double the IEA’s projected rate and reach 5 tons per person by 2032 if they continue at their current pace.
It appears that even planting trees has business opportunities!