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Unpacking the Carbon Credit Conundrum Session 1

February 20 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

A webinar series for ranchers, farmers and technical service providers

Tuesdays 11 a.m. – 12:30p.m. MT from February 20 – March 12

Join us for a webinar series co-hosted by CSU’s Soil Carbon Solutions Center and Quivira Coalition. In conversation with producers, scientists and carbon market experts, we’ll learn the basics of agricultural carbon markets, specific case studies, how to assess different carbon projects and ask the right questions, and emerging opportunities for producers in carbon and ecosystem service markets. And we’ll learn from you about your hopes, challenges and questions regarding carbon credits. The webinar series is not endorsing carbon markets but aiming to inform attendees so they can make their own decisions.
Free. Register to receive the Zoom link.

Questions? Contact Leah Potter-Weight at education@quiviracoalition.org.

2/20: Carbon markets 101
Hear from experts Dr. Jane Zelikova, executive director of the Soil Carbon Solutions Center, Dr. Megan Machmuller, research scientist at Colorado State University’s Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, and Dr. John Ritten, livestock economist at CSU and AgNext teammember. We will dive into the intricacies of soil carbon, from soil sampling techniques to the rapidly expanding field of voluntary carbon markets. They will also discuss receiving payments for carbon sequestration, how "additionality" shapes producers’ ability to participate in those markets, how carbon is measured and data is used, and generally, the possibilities, challenges, and limitations of carbon markets for producers. Don't miss this opportunity to unravel the complexities of carbon markets and the roles they play in meeting sustainability goals!

2/27: Carbon market case studies (grazing and cropping)
Learn about producer experiences accessing carbon markets for their own operations - what worked, what didn't work, lessons they learned along the way, and creative alternatives to carbon markets. Also, learn how producers enter their contracts, how they measure carbon, and how payments work. Speakers include Kris Hulvey, founder and chief scientist of Working Lands Conservation who will speak about ranching case studies and data ownership, rancher Bill Milton who utilizes carbon markets as well as a number of other programs to help pay for his conservation-style ranching, and Jada Dormaier, supply account manager who works directly with farmers for Nori, a carbon marketplace. 

3/5: Evaluating whether a carbon project is right for you
This webinar will help you consider: when a project developer is knocking on your door, what are the key criteria to use for evaluating one market over another? What questions do you need to ask? What is included in the NDAs producers are asked to sign? Who owns the data? What is the chain of custody for the carbon credits generated? And learn how producers deal with project contract lengths and requirements around permanence. Speakers include Chris Mehus, executive director of Western Sustainability Exchange, and Betsy and Roger Indreland, owners and operators of Indreland Ranch.

3/12: Emerging opportunities in carbon markets and beyond
There are increasingly creative opportunities for producers to be paid for their carbon sequestration or ecosystem services. Learn about some creative, emerging opportunities and how they are being accessed by producers, as well as how these markets can be improved to increase accessibility and equitability. Speakers include Bryan Van Stippen, program director for National Indian Carbon Coalition, and Doug Adams, member engagement and equity manager at Ecosystem Services Market Consortium.

This material is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, under agreement number NR238C30XXXXC005.

Speaker Bios:
*more bios forthcoming

Dr. Megan Machmuller

Dr. Megan Machmuller is a research scientist in the Department of Soil & Crop Sciences at Colorado State University, and serves as the co-director of IN-RICHES (Integrated Rocky Mountain-region Innovation Center for Healthy Soils) and on the executive leadership team of the Soil Carbon Solution Center. Megan is a soil ecologist and biogeochemist, and her research program aims to advance scientific understanding of the mechanisms and drivers that promote healthy soils and ecosystems.

Dr. Jane Zelikova

Dr. Jane Zelikova’s work focuses on advancing the science of carbon removal and she is currently the executive director of the Soil Carbon Solutions Center at Colorado State University, where she works with leading scientists to build the tools and approaches needed to accelerate the deployment of credible soil-based climate solutions, measure their impacts, and bring them to scale.

Dr. John Ritten

Dr. John Ritten is an agricultural economist at CSU and a member of the AgNext team. He received a BS in Marketing from Arizona State University, an MBA from New Mexico State University, and a PhD in Natural Resource Economics from Colorado State University. His research interests include the intersection of agricultural production and natural resource management. Prior to joining AgNext, John served as the University of Wyoming’s state Agricultural Systems Extension specialist for 14 years.

Kris Hulvey

I am an ecologist and the Lead Scientist at Working Lands Conservation (WLC). WLC is a nonprofit organization that partners with diverse stakeholders to design and test new management strategies for working lands, with a focus on US Western rangelands. Key to this work is building strong relationships that result in transparent science. I have over 20 years of research experience focused on ecosystem restoration, and the links between ecosystem management and human well-being. Currently, at WLC we are testing how innovative grazing systems on public and private lands can improve riparian conditions, store carbon in rangelands, and also support rancher livelihoods.

Jada Dormaier

Jada Dormaier is a Supply Account Manager with Nori, a carbon marketplace. She works directly with farmers enrolling in Nori’s carbon program. Previously, she worked as a crop insurance agent across Washington State and enjoys the opportunity to build relationships and help create income streams for farmers, ensuring they can continue their work, while also helping the planet. Jada holds a BS in Economics and an MS in Conflict Resolution and Negotiation.

Bill Milton

My family has been ranching in Montana since 1956. My wife Dana and I have owned and operated our current family ranch in Musselshell County since 1978. We have three children, two boys working in Montana, and a daughter, a fireman paramedic in Connecticut, who plans to return to the family ranch. During the last 50 or so years, I have worked with several local organizations and efforts committed to taking care of land and community. In 2019 my wife Dana and I were the first Montana recipients of the Aldo Leopold Award. Most recently, I am participating as a rancher member, and sometimes facilitator, with several working groups in Central Montana, covering nine counties, including the Musselshell Watershed Coalition, the Winnett ACES, the CMR Community Working Group, and the Musselshell Valley Community Foundation. I have assisted several ranch families with succession planning facilitation. I have a particular interest in figuring out how ranchers and local communities monitor the health of their working landscapes and communities-particularly within the Grassland Biome of North America, Since February of 2016, I have been facilitating a broad and diverse group of partners, called the Rangeland Monitoring Group (RMG), dedicated to finding an effective means to achieve this objective. Relatedly, I am on the Planning Committee for the Central Grasslands Roadmap and the Life in the Land Project (lifeintheland.org). Certainly not unrelated, my practice as a Soto Zen Priest, has helped inform and support my appreciation for our shared interdependence and the need to imagine solutions respectful of everyone’s unmet needs.

Chris Mehus

Chris Mehus is the executive director at Western Sustainability Exchange. Born, raised, and educated in Montana, Chris has always maintained a joint passion for agriculture and the outdoors. He has applied his degrees in Wildlife Biology and Range Science to assist and advocate for ranchers who have a strong conservation ethic. After 10 years of ranching experience in Southern Montana putting his education to practice in numerous areas of grazing management and planning, Chris spent many years working in rural business, economic, and financial planning giving him unique insight into the workings of a ranch business to understand economic drivers and incentives that make ranching with nature a more profitable operating model than typical conventional practices. He is an outspoken advocate for the Ranching For Profit, Integrity Soils, Holistic Management International, and related schools of thought and how they can be applied to create a thriving ranch business while creating healthy, functioning ecological systems with rich soil and diverse wildlife populations.

Betsy and Roger Indreland

Indreland Ranch, located in south central Montana, is owned and operated by Roger and Betsy Indreland. Raising Angus seedstock is their main enterprise, selling about 80 18 month old forage raised bulls annually in December. Other enterprises include a small beef business, and a neglected worm farm that has great potential! Indreland Ranch focuses on lowering input costs and strives to graze year round by working with natural systems and managing for abundance. www.IndrelandRanch.com 1-866-901-BEEF

Doug Adams

As Ecosystem Services Market Research Consortium's (ESMC/ESMRC) Manager, Member Engagement & Equity, Doug is responsible for leading initiatives that support ESMC’s commitment to inclusion and racial justice (IRJ) across all operational and organizational functions as well as engaging with all our current members and reaching out to potential new members. As part of his role, Doug leads ESMC’s IRJ Working Group – driving increased program enrollment by under-served & under-represented agricultural communities via strategic outreach and engagement efforts.

Doug is a program management professional and sustainability enthusiast, with 15 years of experience spanning marketing, ag-tech, and social media. In 2017, he founded New Brooklyn Farms – an urban farm and green event space network based in the Washington DC-area. Doug is an active member of the Fair Farms Farmer Advisory Council, former Vice Chair of the MD Organic Food and Farming Association, and published speaker. He holds a B.A. in Communications from Temple University, and a Master Composter certificate from the NYC Compost Project at Brooklyn Botanical Garden.

Bryan Van Stippen

Bryan Van Stippen is Program Director for National Indian Carbon Coalition, an initiative of the Indian Land Tenure Foundation (ILTF) that provides education, training, and technical assistance to American Indian tribes, Alaska Native Villages & Corporations, Native Hawaiian organizations and First Nations in Canada on the development of carbon credit and renewable energy projects on tribal land. A member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, Van Stippen previously served for seven years as Tribal Attorney for the Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Justice in Wisconsin where he was responsible for land acquisition and other land-related issues. He earned a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration and a Masters in Computer Information Systems from Tarleton State University in Texas. Van Stippen is a graduate of the University of North Dakota School of Law (J.D.); the University of Tulsa College of Law (LL.M. in American Indian and Indigenous Law); and the University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law (S.J.D in Indigenous Peoples Law & Policy). He lives with his wife and two children in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Bryan is a representative on the 1t.org US Stakeholder Council, a representative on the Voluntary Carbon Market Initiative Expert Advisory Group, a Legacy Member of the Ecosystem Service Marketplace Consortium, and a representative on the Bipartisan Policy Center Farm and Forest Carbon Solutions Task Force.

The series is sponsored by:


February 20
11:00 am - 12:30 pm


Education and Outreach