Tree-Nation project validation and verification

Based on our 17 years of experience working with projects in the field, we have developed our own project verification methodology to maintain an excellent standard while we achieve our mission of planting one trillion trees by 2050.

Onboarding new projects to our platform

Before a project is opened for funding on our platform, it must first undergo a validation process which certifies the project’s compliance with our project requirement criteria.

Only projects with a proven track record that fulfills these standard requirements are able to raise funds from our Tree-Nation community (these projects are called 'affiliated projects'). We put a strong emphasis on projects that invest in new reforestation techniques, scientific research and innovation.

Our ongoing project verification strategy

Our project verification relies on a combination of on-site as well as digital project analysis methodologies that we use to determine the official Tree-Nation VQS (Verification Quality Score) of each project.

At Tree-Nation our mission is to create a platform that can support all types of projects, both large and small. Therefore, in order to verify projects relative to their scope, we segregate all our projects across categories determined by their tree-planting volume.

Each category entails its own set of project verification responsibilities that our projects must comply with. Higher categories meant for larger projects prescribe more demanding verification responsibilities, while lower categories achieve the opposite effect.

The verification responsibilities are periodically analyzed by Tree-Nation to produce a project's VQS which presents our own verdict on the quality standards of the given project. All our projects must achieve a minimum VQS score to first become affiliated and later to remain on the Tree-Nation platform, while projects with high VQS scores receive increased access to the Tree-Nation sponsor base.

Keep in mind that additionally to its VQS, every affiliated Tree-Nation project has signed our code of conduct, committing itself to follow fundamental environmental, social and labor standards. You can access our code of conduct here.

Our verification elements

Our list of verification elements includes but is not limited to the following:

  1. Project location

  2. Administration of the project's legal entity

  3. Interviews with key project personnel

  4. Project mission

  5. Project strategy

  6. Project activities and planting methods

  7. Project documentation

  8. Project validation reports

  9. Species selection

  10. Planting sites

  11. Tree survival rates

  12. Tree maintenance strategy

  13. Proof of planting (using geo-tagged pictures)

  14. Environmental benefits

  15. Social benefits

  16. Voluntary GHG standards (VCS/CCB, Gold Standard, PlanVivo, REDD+)

  17. Cross-checks with local forestry authorities

  18. Expert reviews

  19. Site visitor reviews

  20. Satellite project time-lapse photos

  21. On-site audits

  22. Planting action data exchange with other reforestation organizations

On-site visits

All of our affiliated projects regardless of category are required to host an on-site Tree-Nation audit. The only categorical discrepancy relates to the cadence of the visits, as projects in high-volume categories are required to host audits more often.

All on-site audits are planned with the goal of verifying that all data inputs provided by the project digitally on our platform are correct. If this is not the case the project will be forced to amend its project page to display accurate information and its VQS score will be diminished.

We supervise the planting sites for the duration of an average tree's lifespan which is between 10-20 years, in order to make sure the trees and terrains are not used for other purposes (e.g. charcoal, wood for construction, cereal plantations, cattle breeding, etc.)

Access to VQS

As the VQS score remains a novel tool in our Projects department's verification toolbox, it's not yet publicized on the given project's Tree-Nation profile. We expect to publish and update VQS scores systematically on the Tree-Nation platform in the near future.

For the time being, each VQS score accompanied by a verification report needs to be requested from Tree-Nation's Projects department.