Domestic deals to convert bare lands into forests and keep tree stands healthy could supply 60 percent of available offsets in any U.S. cap-and-trade plan on greenhouse gas emissions, a Barclays Capital analyst said.
The overall supply of domestic offsets could hit 250 million short tons annually by 2020, Trevor Sikorski, a London-based director of carbon markets at Barclays said in a research note.
U.S. forestry and agriculture projects could supply 150 million short tons of those offsets by 2020, the note said.
"Given the political importance of forestry and agriculture in the United States ... (such) offsets will be included in any federal cap-and-trade system," Sikorski said. Trees absorb carbon dioxide as they grow.
In cap-and-trade markets such as the European Union, polluters have the option to invest in offsets, or off-site projects such as small hydropower systems to generate clean electricity or destruction of ...