Working for a Sustainable Future in the Amazon Basin
Plant Your Future is a charity that works with economically disadvantaged farmers to address unsustainable slash-and-burn agriculture and ranching that has led to widespread deforestation in the Peruvian Amazon. A team from our London and Madrid offices worked to develop a legal agreement between the smallholder farmers in Peru and Plant Your Future, which seeks to ensure that Plant Your Future's "agroforestry" project is financially sustainable and beneficial to all parties.
Plant Your Future's goal is to reduce poverty for farming communities while also mitigating climate change, avoiding deforestation, and restoring ecosystems. Through their project, Plant Your Future restores degraded and deforested land in the Amazon region of Peru by planting a combination of crops, native fruit trees, and timber tree species, which is known as "agroforestry."
They are leading the development of an innovative business strategy to help farmers achieve "added value" from the sale of native Amazonian fruit grown in the agroforestry systems, including marketing of produce in Lima. They are also quantifying the carbon dioxide that is removed from the atmosphere as a result of tree growth so they can generate a further revenue stream through the sale of carbon offsets.
The project is unable to access carbon finance until it is carbon certified by a third-party audit company against a recognized carbon standard. The project is seeking certification under the Verified Carbon Standard and Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standard, but to do so Plant Your Future must be able to demonstrate that the project has both the legal right to the carbon credits and the legal right to be able to commercialize the credits on behalf of the smallholder farmers.
The Hogan Lovells team has developed a legal agreement that formalizes the relationship between the farmers and Plant Your Future, transferring the carbon rights to Plant Your Future to enable them to be commercialized. This agreement sets out that the smallholder farmers will receive technical and financial assistance to reforest their land, a share of the carbon revenues, and all rights to the timber and fruit generated from the reforestation activities. The agreement underwent an extensive consultation process with the farmers and other stakeholders before being signed.