Why should you care?
Current regulations do not allow you to reap the income from the sale of carbon offsets generated on crown land. However, crown lands are on the government radar. By virtue of their size, crown lands offer the greatest potential for land use and land use change based carbon sequestration projects.
Regulations are not static. The politics of global carbon management are still developing. Carbon management, through the use of tradable permit markets, is developing by legislation in Europe and voluntarily in select parts of North America. The possibility that North America should legislate carbon management should be on the planning horizon of every commercial interest in Canada and the US.
If North America implements a climate change / carbon management scheme, we can expect the regulatory system to adjust. Given the potential for forest carbon management on large tracts of land, we should also expect some change in the regulatory environment for crown land forest tenure licensees.
Participating in the carbon market, like any new activity, requires experience to operate efficiently and profitably. Despite not being legally required to do so, forest tenure licensees may consider taking on modest forest carbon projects in order to learn while the stakes are low.