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National Aeronautics and Space Administration

When New Carbon Markets and New Technologies MeetNovember 20

About Our Speakers

JEFF COLE | Vice President, Portfolio Development | San Francisco, California
Jeff Cole is responsible for expanding Blue Source’s portfolio of carbon credits and project investments by sourcing and implementing new projects and identifying emerging market opportunities. Jeff is an expert in forest carbon quantification and development, having seen many voluntary and California compliance forestry offset projects through to completion. In addition to carbon finance and policy, Jeff has broad experience delivering climate, energy and sustainability management solutions to leading corporations as a consultant with California Environmental Associates, Program Director of the Chemical Strategies Partnership, and co-founder of an energy and environmental performance management software provider. He previously worked as an investment banker with Goldman Sachs in New York and Hong Kong, and as a consultant to renewable energy marketers, including PG&E Energy Services and Grameen Shakti. Jeff holds an MBA and MA in Energy and Resources from UC Berkeley, and a BA in Economics and Asian Studies from Dartmouth College.

KEVIN TOWNSEND | Chief Commercial Officer | Salt Lake City, Utah
Kevin Townsend, Chief Commercial Officer, leads Blue Source's sales and marketing efforts through development of strategic marketing initiatives. His responsibilities include structuring offset purchases and designing offset portfolios for a wide array of buyer types. Kevin also devotes a portion of his time to expanding the offset portfolio through sourcing efforts in the wastewater treatment, organic digestion and industrial gas sectors. In his prior role with Parker Hannifin Corp., Kevin focused on driving market growth, engineering and new technologies in the construction, mining and forestry industries. Kevin holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University and an MBA from Westminster College.

About the Talk

While national and international climate efforts struggle ahead, the California and Quebec cap and trade programs are going strong. The California program has fostered the development of dozens of forest carbon projects. All forest project owners must commit to significant initial and ongoing (100-year) carbon inventory, monitoring and verification requirements at a cost often reaching hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Remote sensing technologies hold enormous potential for reducing the implementation and maintenance costs of forest carbon projects. They may enable participation of many of landowners who control forests that are too small given current project costs and economies of scale and may help large-scale project economics as well.

Despite this potential, so far no carbon protocols or projects have explicitly incorporated remote sensing technologies; however, some specific steps can be identified regarding how adoption could be accelerated in concert with project developers, registries and regulators.

The talk will address these issues and others:

• Current state of carbon markets in North America and beyond
• Forestry’s role in North American carbon markets
• Forest carbon project requirements, mechanics and economics
• Forest carbon inventory requirements, processes, costs
• Status of, prospects for and barriers to adoption of remote sensing by regulators and markets
• Ways to promote adoption of remote sensing by existing regulatory and voluntary carbon programs


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This talk was held at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center on April 15, 2015, as part of the Carbon Monitoring System Applications Policy Speaker Series.

For upcoming events, check out CMS Applications Policy Speaker Series.

Your suggestions for future speakers or feedback about our series are welcomed.  Contact the Applications Team.