Friday, February 22, 2013

New Offset Protocols for California GHG Cap & Trade Program

Notice of Public Workshop on Addition of New Offset Protocols to the California Greenhouse Gas Cap-and-Trade Program‏
ARB will hold a public workshop on new offset protocol development.

Staff from the Air Resources Board (ARB) invites you to participate in a workshop as part of amendments of the California greenhouse gas (GHG) Cap-and-Trade Program. This workshop will
focus on evaluating the technical details of adding protocols for Coal Mine Methane Projects and Rice Cultivation Projects to the Cap-and-Trade Regulation. At the workshop, ARB staff will
provide an overview of the proposed protocols including project eligibility, proposed quantification methodologies, and recognition of early action offset credits. We welcome and encourage your participation in this event.

Workshop Time and Location

Date: Thursday, March 28, 2013
Time: 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Location: Byron Sher Auditorium
Second Floor, Cal/EPA Headquarters,
1001 “I” Street
Sacramento, CA 95812


The California Cap on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Market-Based
Compliance Mechanisms Regulation went into effect on January 1,
2012. The Cap-and-Trade Regulation contains provisions for the
use of a limited number of ARB offset credits generated under
approved Compliance Offset Protocols to meet an entities
compliance obligation. Currently the Regulation recognizes four
Compliance Offset Protocols: Ozone Depleting Substances Projects,
Livestock Projects, Urban Forest Projects, and U.S. Forest
 ARB has identified
two new protocols, Rice Cultivation Projects and Coal Mine
Methane Projects, as potentially meeting the requirements
specified in the Regulation for approval as Compliance Offset

The protocol for Coal Mine Methane Projects quantifies reductions
in methane emissions from mining operations. Underground and
surface coal mining can release methane to the atmosphere before,
during and after the mining process. There are two key sources
of methane from active coal mining: ventilation and
degasification. During ventilation dilute methane is vented
through mine ventilation shafts. For degasification vertical or
horizontal wells remove methane from the underground mine before,
during, or after mining. To reduce methane emissions, methane
can be captured and used for energy production or flared. The
protocol would include methodologies to identify eligible project
types, and to identify and quantify of eligible methane sources.

The protocol for Rice Cultivation Projects quantifies reductions
in methane emissions from flooded rice fields. Flooding results
in anaerobic decomposition of organic matter. The organic matter
can originate from soil amendments, plant residues or root
exudates. The amount of methane produced is affected by the
duration of flooding, the rice variety and the availability of
crop residues and organic matter.

The protocol would use the DeNitrification-DeComposition (DNDC)
biogeochemical process model to quantify soil carbon dynamics,
N2O and CH4 emissions. At this time projects would be limited to
California and the Mid-South Region (list states) for which the
DNDC model has been calibrated with empirical data. And the
protocol would be limited to three specific project activities:
(1) replacing wet seeding with dry seeding, (2) early drainage,
and (3) baling of rice straw.

Workshop Materials and Written Comments

The workshop materials will be posted prior to the workshop at At
this website, you may join our electronic mailing list to receive
notices of ARB activities and public meetings. This website may
also be used to submit written comments on the workshop. Please
submit written comments by April 19, 2013.

Video/Audio Webcast

A live video/audio webcast will be available for the workshop at
the following link:

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