How Grow My Tree leverages AI & satellite technology to improve carbon sequestration of tree-planting
Dear Tree Friends,
In this blog post, we would love to give you some insights into our recent collaboration with CarbonSpace to measure and optimize the carbon impact of our projects.
As you know, planting trees in the Global South means maximizing impact for Sustainable Development: Trees do not only provide communities with a sustainable source of income and bring back biodiversity as well as healthy soil and water conditions, but they are also one of our strongest weapons in the fight against climate change. Their potential to absorb carbon from the atmosphere and store it in their biomass and soil makes them a natural wonder in combating the climate crisis. However, how much carbon a tree (species) can actually sequester and how this changes exactly over time, is still a difficult topic in academia and subject to ongoing research.
At Grow My Tree , we i) want to get better at evaluating the carbon data of our own projects and ii) want to support the scientific and non-scientific tree-planting community to establish best practices around tree-planting, thus maximising the positive climate impact of trees. Therefore, we recently partnered with CarbonSpace.
CarbonSpace uses AI technology and couples satellite, ground sensor and inventory data to calculate the CO2 flux data of a selected area. This technology simplifies the otherwise costly and uncertain estimations of traditional carbon measuring tools. The methods used in CarbonSpace include peer-reviewed ‘bottom-up’ and ‘top-down’ approaches which increase the reliability of CO2 estimations. All of the procedure happens remotely and does not require any on site operations. Additionally, CarbonSpace offers global coverage and high resolution: CO2 fluxes can be calculated starting from 1 hectare which makes the solution perfect for our projects that are often fragmented and small to medium scale-sized.
And how does this work in detail? Pretty simple: We are providing the coordinates of our project areas (called Polygons) to CarbonSpace and in return receive the monthly Net Ecosystem Exchange value, representing the net exchange of CO2 between an ecosystem and the atmosphere. Negative values indicate that carbon has been accumulated in the ecosystem and positive values indicate that CO2 has been emitted to the atmosphere. By using this AI technology, we will be able to estimate the exact amount of carbon dioxide exchanged between our trees and the atmosphere over time. We will be able to understand how much carbon our trees are sequestering over short and long periods of time - and how the carbon development of the area changed (five years prior to planting till present).
This of course is a long-term process and commitment: It takes some time until reforested ecosystems actually start sequestering carbon. Only after around 10 - 20 years, trees reach their maximum sequestration potential which they can then uphold for decades. By using the technology of CarbonSpace now, we want to contribute to Open Source Data and enable Grow My Tree as well as the whole tree-planting community to get better at maximizing carbon impact of tree-planting projects. Using AI also means that complex, costly, timely and bureaucratic procedures for carbon certification, such as the Gold standard and the Verified Carbon Standard, can be replaced by technology solutions - thereby maximizing the amount of funds and time actually allocated to the projects in the ground.
We are at the beginning of a long-term journey: It is not about planting a tree but about growing a healthy ecosystem with maximum impact for our people and planet. Please get in touch if you would like to find out more about how you or your company can support tree-planting sites tracking carbon impact. Thank you for accompanying us on our journey and please keep supporting us!
From trees with love, Grow My Tree
From trees with love,
Grow My Tree