Skip to main content

Why It Matters

Climate Change

We can’t stop climate change without ending deforestation. Forests store millions of tons of carbon, but we’re losing 40 football fields a day.

Stand For Trees helps to change the economic incentives that lead to deforestation.


Forests do many, many things. They clean air and water; help to prevent soil erosion and protect against natural disasters; provide building materials, foods, medicines, and much more for humans; and create habitat for wildlife. Our member projects each protect a threatened forest in an incredibly biodiverse area of the world.

Livelihoods & Poverty

Forests in the developing world are critical to the lives of the communities that call them home. All Stand For Trees projects hold special certifications for supporting community development, poverty reduction, and sustainable livelihoods – giving communities a sustainable alternative to clearing their forests.

Biodiversity & Ecosystems

Forests are some of the most diverse ecosystems on earth. And everything in them depends on the rest of the ecosystem, from worms and insects that make the soil richer, to trees that provide shade, food, and territory. The more biodiversity, the stronger it is. That’s why protecting intact forests is so important.


Tropical forests don’t just store carbon. They’re lavish, interconnected ecosystems that are home to thousands of species of animals, birds, and fish: endangered and stable, rare and common, known and unknown. Our projects have all earned special certifications for protecting wildlife.

How It Works

Tropical deforestation has many causes – land conversion for crops, pasture for cattle grazing, artisanal mining, or resource use like firewood or timber production. Because tropical forest countries are mostly developing, with few economic opportunities, the underlying incentive is the need to earn an income.

Standing forests have to provide value to these countries and communities. Otherwise, they will always be at risk.

Stand For Trees uses the REDD+ model to fix this problem. REDD is a UN-approved model specially created to fight climate change by saving forests. And the ‘+’ represents all the other things we get from forests – like biodiversity, livelihoods, wildlife habitat, and much more.

Trees, roots, and soils store carbon dioxide, and lots of it. So keeping them standing avoids releasing carbon into the atmosphere. And since we know that climate change is going to cost society a lot of money, we also know that it’s worth a lot of money to prevent it.

And so we can assign a financial value to the carbon that standing forests store – which is what REDD+ does.

That financial value is represented by carbon credits. When keeping forests standing is worth real money, suddenly there’s an alternative to cutting them down. And then the carbon stays in the ground.

Stand For Trees certificates represent a fixed amount of carbon not emitted because a forest is keeping it safely stored.

Our projects are the link between you and the carbon. They measure the carbon in the forests, stop deforestation, and receive REDD+ payments. But they only get these payments when they can prove the forests aren’t being cut down. So with Stand For Trees, you pay for performance. (Compare this to campaigns, which may or may not be successful.)

How does this work? All our projects have to meet the extremely rigorous requirements of the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS), under which a neutral third party has to verify that the project is successfully stopping deforestation and climate change.

All Stand for Trees projects also have Gold level Climate, Community, and Biodiversity (CCB) certification. This ensures that they are saving endangered species, protecting wildlife habitat, maintaining ecosystems, supporting communities, creating jobs and reducing poverty, and improving critical services like education, healthcare, and clean water provision. These claims are also verified by a neutral third party.

The world’s leading environmental registry, Markit, holds the project’s carbon credits in trust after they are issued. When you make a purchase, Markit retires it permanently. Nobody else can buy it: your impacts are yours alone.

We’ve gone from global climate change to forests to local communities. Let’s put it all together.

With REDD+, fighting climate change is just the tip of the iceberg. It helps communities get healthier and stronger. It safeguards vital habitats, many of them home to endangered species. And it helps to create fresh air and rainfall for all living things on the planet.

We think that’s no small thing.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a certificate?

Stand For Trees Certificates are measurable, verified, high-quality carbon credits that prevent carbon dioxide from entering the Earth’s atmosphere by protecting a specific endangered forest. Each one represents measurable impacts for climate, communities, and biodiversity.

What is a ‘tonne?’

One tonne means one metric tonne of carbon dioxide.

What makes this program so unique?

Normally, a regular person could never save a forest directly. That’s because most initiatives to save forests involve campaigns with uncertain outcomes. And although REDD+ guarantees results, its credits are inaccessible, as they are usually only available as business transactions.
Until now. Stand For Trees was created to solve this problem, and to bring the power of REDD+ directly to you.

Has this model been proven?

REDD+ has been extensively proven, and is now expanding to cover entire regions or countries. Responsible corporations are also addressing their unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions by investing in forest conservation through REDD+.

Is my purchase tax deductible?

Unfortunately not. That’s because in return for your donation, you receive a certificate in your name. That certificate represents measurable impacts for climate, communities, and biodiversity, through the credits that we retire on your behalf. It’s specifically for the forest(s) that you have chosen to support. And that’s why those impacts are yours and yours alone.

What does 'retire' mean?

Each credit has its own, unique serial number. When you buy a tonne, our system automatically removes its serial number from circulation (i.e. retires it).

Who are Code REDD and USAID?

Code REDD is a 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to support and scale the REDD+ mechanism to fulfill its full potential. USAID is the United States Agency for International Development, an agency of the US federal government. Code REDD and USAID have come together to create the Stand For Trees campaign.

How are Stand for Trees projects selected?

Based on their ability to demonstrate robust impact on forest conservation and community development. Projects must hold both VCS and CCB certification, plus Gold status for at least one CCB criteria, and meet Code REDD’s own Code of Conduct.

If you have any further questions, please contact us at