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Accelerating the climate transition

Providing a high-impact, low-risk, trusted solution to net-zero

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We are a joint venture between two world-class businesses

Vertree is a new vehicle, bringing together deep project knowledge and market-making expertise. Through our work we guide corporates, institutions, governments and institutional investors from around the world on their journey towards net-zero emissions.

Our track record

10+ years

on the ground forest and landscape project experience

15+ years

experience in carbon markets

20+ years

commodity risk management experience

25+ years

extensive corporate and financial strategic advisory experience

our mission
Our mission is to support corporates and institutions mitigate their environmental impact through the use of carbon finance and drive the biggest positive climate, community and biodiversity impacts on the planet

Only the highest integrity verified emission reductions from existing and new projects

Long-term price and delivery risk management mitigated by world-class commodity merchant

Projects with high community engagement and local support

Up-to-date project information from our local, on the ground partners

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Working with world-leading partners to mitigate climate impact and deliver high quality offsets

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Let us harness the power of nature together.

Get in touch and through a long-term partnership, we can mitigate the impact of global climate change together.

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From the knowledge centre

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Our stories from the Congo Basin and the Amazon

“Regenerative business models integrate the needs of society with the integrity of nature. They ensure that the natural sources of…

“Regenerative business models integrate the needs of society with the integrity of nature. They ensure that the natural sources of value on which society depends are renewed and increased, rather than depleted or maintained.”

A regenerative human culture is healthy, resilient and adaptable. It cares for the planet as this is the most effective way to create a thriving future for all of us. Morten has in the past decade been focused on mobilising finance, business skills and market access to the right entrepreneurs (often indigenous communities) across the tropical belt. These entrepreneurs have created economic value of protecting and restoring the most rich and threatened ecosystems we have on the planet and thereby integrate economic, social and environmental development.
Morten has led teams working in the basins of the Amazon, Congo and Indonesia as well as many other important ecosystems on land or in the ocean across the tropical belt supporting around 150 companies or institutions.

One example is in the western part of the Congo Basin, a community forest association on the border of the Dja Faunal Reserve – which is home to elephants, hippos and gorillas. Morten has seen cocoa production in West Africa, South-East Asia and Latin America, which often degenerates and destroys nature, but this location is different. The local communities include the Ba’aka people have used their knowledge of this is old-growth forest to intercrop cocoa and other agroforestry products as an economic buffer to the national park. This early stage of a regenerative business model however still needs more work in particular on improving the social development, and without further support for example from climate finance this amazing culture and landscape will not thrive.
Another interesting example is the ARSX, which is a network of indigenous seed collectors from Xingu stretching both the Brazilian Amazon forest and the Cerrado biomes. ARSX develops restoration products in particular to Brazilian agriculture corporates in order to comply with the forest regulation. They use a climate neutralisation approach that is called Muvuca, where recipes often consisting of more than 50 different native seeds have carefully been selected in order to regenerate forests in the specific location, where restoration is needed. This nature-based solution is a cheaper, more effective and yields greater social impact than other restoration techniques.

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Our stories from Indonesia

Team Testimonials – George Darrah “Access to long-term, stable and secured funding is the Holy Grail for companies, NGO’s and…

Team Testimonials – George Darrah

“Access to long-term, stable and secured funding is the Holy Grail for companies, NGO’s and state organisations conserving and restoring rainforest landscapes.”

George was focused on solving the problem of the negative relationship between nature and economic development since being immersed in a Bornean rainforest as a student, and conversely the palm oil plantations that surrounded the remaining forest. George lead a Systemiq team based in central Sumatra, Jambi province, developing and deploying capital into regenerative business models on behalf of an ecosystem restoration company. The company was mandated by the Indonesian Government to conserve and restore nearly 40,000 hectares of lowland rainforest across the Bukit Tigapuluh ecosystem, one of the only remaining areas where tigers, elephants and orangutans still live.

George and the team assessed over 30 different rainforest business models, before narrowing down to three products: a high value wild forest honey, organic and shade grown Sumatran vanilla, and climate and biodiversity compensation. Learning first-hand the challenges of logistics, abundance, execution capacity of local organisations and ability to scale quickly and materially, it was clear that a combination of high value retail products was needed. This would tangibly tell the story of the communities and the incredible diversity of products that the rainforest produces. But to scale the ‘wealthy rainforest’ to millions of hectares across Indonesia there was a need to commercialise the true benefits of the rainforests – their capacity as both the lungs of the planet, but also the treasure chest of biodiversity.

“The indigenous Talang Mamak live deep in the rainforest, in a forest clearing called Semerantihan. Crossing over the river, often unpassable into the village, we enter another world. The elders of the village, often women, spend the morning collecting ‘endemic edible commodities’, jungle foods, and we pour over them in the village ‘shop’. Dragon’s blood, wild cumin, mushrooms and a berry that turns a glass of water into jelly. We work with an Indonesian premium foods retailer to connect these products and their stories to the emerging middle class across Indonesia. These forests are disappearing under an onslaught of fire and deforestation, but the stories and lives of their inhabitants remain as fascinating and vibrant as ever.”

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How to protect and restore natural capital assets

Despite our dependence on healthy land, and on coastal and marine ecosystems, we are depleting them at an alarming rate,…

Despite our dependence on healthy land, and on coastal and marine ecosystems, we are depleting them at an alarming rate, which undermines the resilience of our economies and exposes humanity to natural liabilities, including the increased risk of zoonotic disease spillover  or simultaneous breadbasket failure. Protection and restoration of natural assets is therefore an essential foundation for a resilient economic system, in both urban and rural areas. The World Economic Forum, in collaboration to SYSTEMIQ, reports below.

Nature-positive policy opportunities:

Invest in Green urban infrastructure: use public and private investments to transform cities into engines of innovation, resilience and prosperity by integrating nature into their design.

Cities today face huge challenges: ambient air pollution claims more than 4 million lives annually, and there is overcrowding, congestion and enormous resource pressure with reliance on extracting “surplus” natural capital from the countryside. By 2050, 68% of the world’s population is expected to live in cities, but 60% of urban areas are yet to be built, which presents a huge opportunity for directing investments into nature-positive infrastructure, such as:

Expanding public green spaces through large-scale planting, conversion of brown sites into ecological conservation areas and the creation of green corridors alongside existing infrastructure. Increased green space has a host of benefits, from creating jobs, to reducing urban temperatures and crime, to improving citizen health and well-being, to driving productivity and innovation. There are many micro-examples of cities investing in nature to enhance resilience, improve liveability and create jobs that could be replicated many times over. For example, in Medellín, Colombia, the local government has planted 30 green corridors around the city, helping to reduce average city temperatures by 2°C. Similarly, the local government in Durban, South Africa, developed a landfill site into an ecological conservation area and employment programme. Each of these opportunities will create localized jobs, strengthening the interest of local constituencies in supporting ecological outcomes. To seize this opportunity, governments need to invest in smart urban planning and central government should work with municipalities to help them put the right financing structures and public-private models in place, with local value-capture mechanisms (from rates to property development equity models) used to share the economics equitably.

Using nature-positive infrastructure design to enhance the resilience of urban environments. Constructed ecosystems, including green roofs, bioretention systems and constructed wetlands are artificial, custom-built components of green infrastructure that are becoming more common in cities. The government of the city of Salford, UK, invested more than $12 billion in a constructed flood storage wetland (of more than 5 hectares) to protect almost 2,000 homes from flood risk, boost access to green space and increase biodiversity.

On a smaller scale, green roofs can reduce energy costs, capture storm water to reduce flood risk, create habitats for urban wildlife, reduce air pollution and urban heat, and even produce food. The market for green roofs is currently worth $9 billion and is set to grow by 12% annually through to 2030. Costs are falling, due to a combination of innovation and
government support; in Singapore, for example, costs fell from around $105 to $70 per square metre between 2016 and 2018, and the city’s 72 hectares of rooftop gardens and green walls are expected to triple by 2030.

Other opportunities include installing permeable pavements and cycle lanes that allow rainwater to pass into the underlying soil to reduce flood risk, support urban tree health (reducing air pollution) and provide natural water treatment.

Local governments can send a clear market signal for such green urban infrastructure by including requirements in planning permission for new buildings, and by rolling out installations across publicly owned assets.

Mobilize for large-scale Ecosystems Protection and Restoration, to mitigate growing risks from nature loss and climate breakdown, create jobs and boost rural livelihoods.

There is no pathway to achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement, nor to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), without immediate protection and restoration of important ecosystems, particularly forests and wetlands  mangroves, peatlands and marshes).

Natural forests store 40 times more carbon than plantation equivalents and are hotspots of biodiversity, yet the rate of tropical forest loss (one football pitch every six seconds in 2019) has remained high for the past two decades. Mangrove forests provide more than $80 billion per year in avoided losses from coastal flooding and directly protect 18 million people in coastal areas. They also contribute $40–50 billion annually through fisheries, forestry and recreation benefits. Every $1 invested in mangrove conservation and restoration generates a benefit of $3, with conservation of existing mangroves yielding significantly higher benefits (88:1) than restoring degraded ones (2:1). Peatlands cover just 3% of the world’s land but store up to 25% of all soil carbon. Currently between 1 and 2 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide are lost from peat soils a year, despite limited benefits from the economic activities that disturb them.

Restoring degraded forests generates between $7 and $30 in economic benefits for every $1 invested. It is also a relatively low-skilled and labour-intensive exercise – an attractive proposition today with global employment forecast to decrease by up to 240 million jobs as a result of COVID-19, with Asia potentially worst hit.35 Similarly, there is a 10:1 return from mangrove conservation and restoration. Overall, new research suggests that expanding protected and conserved areas to at least 30% of our planet will result in financial and economic benefits exceeding the costs by a factor of at least 5:1 – 30% protection of our planet leads to increased economic output averaging $250 billion annually and generates additional non-monetized economic benefits from ecosystem services averaging $350 billion annually by 2050.

Some countries are already seizing these opportunities as part of their stimulus measures: Germany allocated $700 million for forest conservation and management; New Zealand aims to create 11,000 jobs in restoring wetlands and riverbanks, removing invasive species and improving tourism and recreation services on public lands; and the World Bank is providing $188 million and technical assistance to promote ecosystem restoration and disaster resilience in Pakistan, with the potential to mobilize 65,000 youths and labourers to
establish 12 new national parks. For conservation and restoration schemes to reach speed and scale – moving from individual, often subsidized, projects to systemic change that can mobilize private-sector ingenuity – both sticks (taxing pollution, closing off free access to natural resources and eliminating perverse incentives for land conversion, regulation and enforcement) and carrots (spatial planning, payments for ecosystem services designed to optimize environmental benefits, reforming agricultural subsidies, access to relevant public goods such as satellite monitoring data) are needed.

Protect and scale Ecotourism infrastructure to preserve the sector’s jobs and economic value and pave the way for further growth.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, ecotourism was one of the fastest-growing subsectors of the travel and tourism industry, which was growing at a rate 40% faster than the overall global economy in 2019. Most ecotourism occurs in or around protected areas, which are estimated to receive 8 billion visits a year, generating revenue and supporting local livelihoods. The economic prize from supporting and scaling the nature-based tourism economy is evidenced by the case of Costa Rica, where the sector was growing by
more than 6% per year pre-COVID-19, contributing more than 13% of GDP and generating around 28% of direct and indirect employment. This has been supported by a raft of progressive policies – including the elimination of cattle subsidies (reducing pressure on forests) and the introduction of payments for ecosystem services.

But this source of economic value is now at risk. The global tourism industry is forecast to contract by up to 25% in 2020,  with annual costs to the (largely wildlife-based) African tourism sector projected at $50 billion and 2 million job losses. Urgent action is required to support this sector in the short term. Governments should provide emergency funding and grants to private-sector enterprises, community-based organizations and conservation NGOs to maintain the integrity and functioning of the assets (aesthetic landscapes, iconic megafauna and biodiversity-rich ecosystems) upon which the industry relies. But for the sector to flourish in the longer term, it will require diversification of income streams for natural assets, most importantly through payments for ecosystem services as well as enforced protected areas. In the absence of a concerted effort to rescue this sector, an increase in land-grabbing, deforestation, illegal mining and wildlife poaching can be expected, further fuelling the vicious cycle of nature loss and economic risks.

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