Redwoods in the Santa Cruz Mountains
Because California’s coast redwood forests are so efficient at capturing and transforming carbon, protecting them can have a significant impact in slowing global climate change. And, as the climate changes, the redwood forests in the Santa Cruz Mountains are one of very few areas here that can provide a refuge for plants and animals to survive, because the area has many microclimates, is cooled by coastal summertime fog, and is still largely unpaved.
Read our Redwoods and Climate series to explore what the latest research tells us about how Earth’s constantly changing climate shaped redwoods over millions of years, how human-caused climate change is affecting redwoods today, and what the future holds for the iconic forests of the Santa Cruz mountains.
Lompico Forest Carbon Project
Before Sempervirens Fund stepped in and bought the Lompico redwood forest in the Santa Cruz Mountains, 60% of the redwoods were slated to be cut down. Sempervirens Fund partnered with PG&E customers, through PG&E’s ClimateSmart program, to pioneer a carbon offset program that provides as much climate protection as taking 2,700 cars off the road for one year.
Located on 425 acres in the Santa Cruz Mountains, the Lompico redwood forest naturally captures and transforms massive amounts of carbon each year. By permanently protecting the trees, Sempervirens Fund ensures this forest continues to benefit our atmosphere and the Earth.
On our Lompico property, we sold carbon credits (greenhouse gas emission reductions) on an annual basis as the redwood trees continue to grow. The project, which followed stringent standards of carbon accounting set forth by the Climate Action Reserve, allowed PG&E customers to join the fight against climate change and offset some of their carbon footprint. Their funding helped protect this forest and promotes climate benefits for everyone.
To learn more about this study on Redwoods and Climate Change, you can watch KQED’s Quest program.