Nature-Based Climate Solutions: Playing an Essential Role in our Sustainable Energy Future

By: Tiffany Roberts, Vice President of Regulatory Affairs

As the conversation about carbon neutrality shifts into high gear, I have found myself thinking more and more about all the options and opportunities we as a society have to reduce and remove greenhouse gas emissions. It is exciting to see all the buzz around removal technology. And we definitely need an all of the above approach if we hope to meet the goals laid out in the Paris Climate Agreement.

In addition to practices like carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) and greenhouse gas-reducing fuel innovations, nature-based climate solutions play a vital role.

What is a nature-based climate solution? Sometimes referred to as ‘natural climate solutions’ or ‘nature-based carbon capture solutions,’ nature-based climate solutions include practices that work to conserve, restore, or manage land in ways that reduce and remove carbon. This might include supporting healthy forest growth and management, conserving wetlands, or utilizing restorative agriculture practices like no-till agriculture and cover crop rotations.

I had the honor of attending an all-day work session back in DC a few years ago which was hosted by the American Forest Foundation’s Family Forest Carbon Program, which engages family forest landowners across the country in forest management practices that support carbon sequestration and forest conservation. The focus of the session was to identify ways to turbo-charge nature-based climate solutions. With approximately 35% of all U.S. forests owned by families and individuals, this nature-based climate solution could make a significant impact on U.S. carbon emissions and our climate.

WSPA stands in support of creative and innovative strategies such as this. And we will continue to encourage stakeholders across all policymaking settings to continue to embrace an all of the above strategy to meeting the climate challenge – Together.

Tiffany Roberts is Vice President, Regulatory Affairs at the Western States Petroleum Association. You can follow her on Twitter @tiffanykroberts, and keep up with her personal blog, Energy is Vital, where she chronicles the impacts of energy inequality through individual stores.


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