A carbon farming project that avoids clearing or deforestation of native forest involves making an active choice to protect standing forest on a property and forgoing use of a clearing permit previously issued by the relevant government agency.
Avoided clearing safeguards carbon stored in the mature native forest cover (defined as an area of land that has trees that are two or more meters tall, and a canopy that covers at least 20% of the total area), avoiding emissions from deforestation. Carbon credits are earned for measured emissions that have been avoided – these can be traded.
Carbon farming projects that protect native forest at risk of clearing are implemented in Australia for either 25 or 100 years. Project areas must have forest cover at the time of the project application, as well as either an eligible clearing permit or evidence of a history of recurrent clearing, and a plan and consent to re-clear had the project proponent not chosen to proceed with a carbon project.