Amanda Sutton looks over a wheat field in northern Colorado and sees a potential project that could help curb greenhouse gas emissions linked to global warming.
“This is a patch of highly-cultivated land that could provide potential carbon offsets,” she said, standing by the field which is owned by the city of Fort Collins and the surrounding county.
“What we would do is take this wheat field and restore it to a native grassland which would sequester carbon from the atmosphere which we could potentially sell,” said Sutton, an environmental specialist with the city.
(See more Sutton comments in the video below)
Potential projects in the emerging carbon market are sprouting like wheat after a good rain across the United States in anticipation of “cap and trade” provisions in a climate bill that has narrowly passed the U.S. House of Representatives but could see significant revision in the Senate.
They could be part of a strategy to meet the bill’s current target to cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent of 2005 levels by 2020. A cap and trade inspired market in Europe has been in place since 2005 and is the biggest by far.