Pascal Xicluna / agriculture.gouv.fr

France has launched a Low Carbon Label for agriculture and forestry, an innovative tool to encourage local actions to fight against the greenhouse gas effect and to encourage carbon sequestration. It guarantees the environmental quality of practices implemented in the field and provides opportunities to financially support these projects to private and public actors.

“This label will support the deployment, in France, of virtuous agricultural and forestry practices for the climate, helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to increase the absorption of CO2 in carbon sinks. These are indispensable in achieving carbon neutrality by 2050,” said Didier Guillaume, French Minister for Agriculture and Food.

The Low Carbon Label is the first case of climate certification adopted by France. It is aimed at all actors wanting to develop local projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or to sequester carbon, proposing a certification process for these reductions in order to attract new financing.

It is also aimed at actors who wish to support positive projects for the environment, for which the quality is guaranteed, for example in order to compensate for their residual emissions. The label creates a simple, inexpensive but rigorous framework in order to guarantee the reality of the greenhouse gas emissions and the environmental quality of the projects.

Even before being created, pilot projects on the ground allowed to test the Low Carbon Label. This is, for example, the case of the Association syndicale libre de gestion des forêts de la Terre de Peyre in the Lozère département of France. This association, launched in 2015 with support from the French Postal Service, worked on a tree-planting project for 36 hectares of land that had been significantly degraded by storms and snow. The project, in addition to its benefits to biodiversity and the local wood economy, will sequester several thousand tons of CO2 over the coming decades.

The label was built with numerous actors who developed over several years accounting methods for emission reduction in the agricultural and forestry industries.