October 16, 2013
This fall marks a major turning point in the 84 year history of the Missouri Mid-South United Church of Christ’s Shannondale Tree Farm. On October 15, Finite Carbon and the UCC Missouri Mid-South Conference registered the 4,000 acre Shannondale Tree Farm with the Climate Action Reserve.
This Conference of the UCC is the first religious entity in the United States to complete a carbon offset project for CA’s greenhouse gas emission reduction program and demonstrates the diversity of forest landowners integrating carbon offset projects into their overall management approach. The project qualifies for over 120,000 CAR offsets and is now being transitioned into the CA Air Resources Board program as an early action offset project.
“Shannondale Tree Farm and its forest ministry make a huge difference in the lives of the people of Shannon County. We provide seasonal work at the time of timber harvest, using local companies who employ local residents. We provide educational support for K-8 children in after school programs and special experiences like field trips out of the county. And we bring together work teams to help neighbors with winterizing their homes, siding, roofing and painting, and outdoor maintenance for elders and those who live with disabilities,” said Jeff Fulk, Pastor and Director of Shannondale. “Revenue from carbon offsets will greatly aid in our financial sustainability and enable us to continue our important work serving the Shannon County community.”
“We are hopeful that with Shannondale entering the carbon offset market, other forest owners in the region will choose to do the same and be rewarded for committing to sustainable management techniques as well,” said Rev. Dr. Davida Foy Crabtree, UCC Missouri Mid-South Acting Conference Minister. “One of my personal hopes is that the churches will use this moment to inventory their own emissions of carbon through travel, heating and cooling, and plastic purchases, and to commit to reduce our church-wide carbon footprint.” The UCC General Synod recently adopted a resolution to encourage churches to become carbon neutral, and several UCC churches are making demonstrable progress on the resolution.
Noted Sean Carney, Finite Carbon president, “Shannondale represents the diversity of U.S. landowners benefiting from forest carbon projects. Having successfully completed the first carbon projects in the nation for a TIMO and REIT, and the first for a conservation organization outside CA, Finite Carbon is demonstrating how carbon offset projects fit with the management practices of forest landowners of all types. Through turnkey carbon project development, we’re proud to assist another community-based non-profit in sustaining good forest practices for the long term and furthering Shannondale’s mission to serve the surrounding community.”
Shannondale’s participation in the CA offset market ensures that the forest will not be developed, that it will continue periodic sustainable timber harvests, and that Shannondale can strengthen its mission of providing an economic base and other forms of support for the people of Shannon County. Founded by the German Evangelical Church in 1929 to serve and financially support the Shannon County community, Shannondale is the oldest continuously owned Tree Farm in Missouri, and the only surviving forest of the first ten Missouri Tree Farms designated by the state in 1949.
About Finite Carbon Corporation
Finite Carbon is America’s leading developer of forest carbon offsets. Combining unparalleled project development experience with extensive carbon market knowledge, Finite Carbon’s in-house team of forest carbon experts offers a single-source solution for creating and monetizing carbon offsets and the most comprehensive forest carbon project development and commercialization service in the US. The company is headquartered in Wayne, PA, and has offices in San Francisco, CA, Cherry Creek, NY, Murfreesboro, TN, and Tallahassee, FL. For more information, visit www.finitecarbon.com
About the United Church of Christ and the Missouri Mid-South Conference, UCC
The Missouri Mid-South Conference serves churches and ministries in Missouri, Arkansas and Memphis, TN. More information at www.missourimidsouth.org. The United Church of Christ (UCC) is a distinct and diverse community of Christians that come together as one church to join faith and action. With more than 5,100 churches and 1.1 million members across the U.S., the UCC serves God in the co-creation of a just and sustainable world. The UCC is a church of firsts, a church of extravagant welcome, and a church where “…they may all be one” (John 17:21). See www.ucc.org.
Click here to view and download a pdf version of the press release.