Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) (Measurement Based Methods for New Farm Forestry Plantations) Methodology Determination 2014

Link to law: https://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2014L01130

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Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) (Measurement Based Methods for New Farm Forestry Plantations) Methodology Determination 20141
Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011
I, GREG HUNT, Minister for the Environment, make this Methodology Determination under subsection 106(1) of the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011.
Dated   6: 8: 2014
Greg Hunt
GREG HUNT
Minister for the Environment
 
Contents
Part 1                           Preliminary
                      1.1      Name of determination                                                                        7
                      1.2      Duration                                                                                             7
                      1.3      Definitions                                                                                          7
                      1.4      Kind of project to which this Determination applies                             16
Part 2                           Requirements for declaration as eligible project
                      2.1      Eligible projects                                                                                18
                      2.2      Location                                                                                           18
                      2.3      Project land characteristics                                                                18
                      2.4      Project mechanisms                                                                          18
                      2.5      Project types                                                                                    19
                      2.6      Identification of project area                                                              19
Part 3                           Delineating boundaries
                      3.1      Division of project area into strata                                                     20
                      3.2      Requirements for strata                                                                     20
                      3.3      Delineating stratum boundaries                                                          21
                      3.4      Ortho-rectified aerial imagery                                                             22
                      3.5      Growth disturbances                                                                         22
                      3.6      Revision of strata affected by growth disturbance                              23
                      3.7      Requirements for disturbance-affected strata                                     23
                      3.8      Requirements for fire-affected strata                                                  23
                      3.9      Requirements for revisions of strata boundaries                                 23
Part 4                           Project operation
                      4.1      Change of project type                                                                      25
                      4.2      Preparation burns                                                                              25
                      4.3      Removal of non-project trees for a project                                         25
                      4.4      Removal of project tree biomass from a permanent planting project    26
                      4.5      Specifying the management regime for a harvest project                    26
                      4.6      Change of management regime for a harvest project                          26
                      4.7      Removal of project tree biomass from a harvest project                     27
                      4.8      Requirements for operation of a harvest project                                 27
                      4.9      Estimating predicted project average carbon stocks                           27
                    4.10      Requirements for estimating predicted project average carbon stocks 28
Requirements for rotation lengths                                                                                       28
Part 5                           Methods for estimating net project abatement
Division 5.1                 Estimating project removals
Subdivision 5.1.1         General
                      5.1      General                                                                                             29
Subdivision 5.1.2         Carbon inventory
                      5.2      Carbon inventory                                                                               29
                      5.3      Precision standard                                                                            31
Subdivision 5.1.3         Allometric functions
                      5.4      Allometric functions for live project trees                                            31
                      5.5      Stratum-specific functions                                                                 32
                      5.6      Regional functions                                                                            32
                      5.7      CFI function                                                                                      32
                      5.8      Converting a stratum-specific function to a regional function               33
                      5.9      Allometric domain                                                                             33
                    5.10      Regression analysis                                                                          33
                    5.11      Minimum data requirements                                                               34
                    5.12      Regression requirements                                                                   35
                    5.13      Allometric report                                                                               36
Subdivision 5.1.4         Applicability of allometric functions
                    5.14      Testing the applicability of allometric functions                                   36
                    5.15      Compatibility checks                                                                         36
                    5.16      Validation test                                                                                   37
                    5.17      Reporting requirements for compatibility and validation tests              38
Subdivision 5.1.5         Allometric functions for live trees
                    5.18      Developing allometric functions for live trees                                     38
                    5.19      Developing stratum-specific functions                                               39
                    5.20      Updating pre-existing stratum-specific functions                                 39
                    5.21      Developing and updating regional functions                                       40
                    5.22      Converting a stratum-specific function to a regional function               42
                    5.23      Updating a CFI function                                                                     42
Subdivision 5.1.6         Measuring biomass sample trees
                    5.24      Measuring above-ground biomass of biomass sample trees               42
                    5.25      Measuring below-ground biomass of biomass sample trees                42
Root:shoot ratio method                                                                                                    43
                    5.26      Assessing carbon stocks in the roots of harvested trees for harvest projects            43
Subdivision 5.1.7         Assessing carbon stocks in dead or burnt trees
                    5.27      Biomass prediction in dead or burnt trees                                          44
                    5.28      Testing for over prediction of a dead or burnt tree biomass                45
Subdivision 5.1.8         Assessing carbon stocks in coarse woody debris and litter
                    5.29      Assessing carbon stocks in coarse woody debris                              46
                    5.30      Assessing carbon stocks in litter                                                       46
Division 5.2                 Calculating project emissions
                    5.31      Calculating fuel emissions from project activities                                46
                    5.32      Calculating fire emissions from a stratum                                           46
Part 6                           Calculating the carbon dioxide equivalent net abatement amount for a project
Division 6.1                 Preliminary
                      6.1      General                                                                                             47
                      6.2      Greenhouse gas assessment boundary                                              47
                      6.3      Calculating the baseline for the project                                               49
                      6.4      Requirements for calculating carbon dioxide equivalent net abatement 49
Division 6.2                 Calculations
Subdivision 6.2.1         Calculating carbon dioxide equivalent net abatement amount
                      6.5      General                                                                                             49
Subdivision 6.2.2         Calculating net greenhouse gas abatement for a project
                      6.6      Equation 1.1—Calculating net greenhouse gas abatement for the project area           49
                      6.7      Equation 1.2—90% confidence interval for net greenhouse gas abatement    50
                      6.8      Equation 1.3—Standard error for net greenhouse gas abatement for the project area 50
                      6.9      Equation 1.4—Degrees of freedom with unequal variances                 50
Subdivision 6.2.3         Calculating carbons stocks for a project
                    6.10      Equation 2.1 & 2.2—Change in carbon stocks within the project          51
                    6.11      Equation 2.3—Standard error for change in carbon stocks within a project for the first offsets report                                                                                               52
                    6.12      Equation 2.4—Standard error for change in carbon stocks within a project    52
                    6.13      Equation 2.5—Initial carbon stocks for a project                                 53
                    6.14      Equation 2.6—Standard error for the initial carbon stocks for the project 53
                    6.15      Equation 2.7—Closing carbon stocks for a project                             53
                    6.16      Equation 2.8—Standard error for the closing carbon stocks for the project   54
                    6.17      Equation 2.9—Lower confidence bound for closing carbon stocks for the project     54
                    6.18      Equation 2.10—Predicted project average carbon stocks for a harvest project          55
                    6.19      Equation 2.11—Predicted stratum average carbon stocks for a harvest project         55
                    6.20      Equation 2.12—Predicted stratum carbon stocks for a harvest project 56
                    6.21      Equation 3.1—Initial carbon stocks for a stratum                                56
                    6.22      Equation 3.2 —Standard error for initial carbon stocks for a stratum    57
                    6.23      Equation 3.3—Closing carbon stocks for a stratum.                           57
                    6.24      Equation 3.4—Standard error for closing carbon stocks for a stratum 58
                    6.25      Equation 3.5—Mean plot carbon stocks for a stratum                         58
                    6.26      Equation 3.6—Standard error for mean plot carbon stocks for a stratum 58
                    6.27      Equation 4.1—Carbon stocks within a plot                                         59
                    6.28      Equation 4.2—Carbon stocks of trees in a plot                                   59
                    6.29      Equation 4.3—Carbon stocks in the roots of harvested trees for a harvest project     59
                    6.30      Equation 4.4—Carbon stocks in litter within a plot                               60
                    6.31      Equation 4.5—Biomass in litter within a plot                                       60
                    6.32      Equation 4.6—Carbon stocks in coarse woody debris within a plot      61
                    6.33      Equation 4.7—Carbon stocks in coarse woody debris within a decay class   61
                    6.34      Equation 4.8—Volume of coarse woody debris within a decay class   62
                    6.35      Equation 4.9—Biomass of project trees in a plot                                62
                    6.36      Equation 4.10—Biomass in the roots of harvested trees in a plot for a harvest project           62
                    6.37      Equation 4.11—Biomass in the roots of harvested trees under a replant system        63
                    6.38      Equation 4.12—Carbon stocks in the roots of harvested trees under a coppice system         63
Subdivision 6.2.4         Calculating project emissions
                    6.39      Equation 5.1—Calculating project emissions for a reporting period      64
                    6.40      Equation 5.2—Standard error for project emissions                            64
                    6.41      Equation 5.3—Calculating fuel emissions for a stratum                       65
                    6.42      Equation 5.4—Calculating emissions for a type of fuel                       65
Subdivision 6.2.5         Calculating fire emissions for a fire-affected stratum
                    6.43      Equation 5.5—Emissions for a fire-affected stratum                           66
                    6.44      Equation 5.6—Emissions of methane from fire                                   66
                    6.45      Equation 5.7—Emissions of nitrous oxide from fire                            67
                    6.46      Equation 5.8—Weight of elemental carbon emitted from fire               67
                    6.47      Equation 5.9—Standard error for emissions from a fire-affected stratum 68
                    6.48      Equation 5.10—Standard error for emissions of methane from fire      68
                    6.49      Equation 5.11—Standard error for emissions of nitrous oxide from fire 68
                    6.50      Equation 5.12—Standard error for weight of elemental carbon emitted from fire        69
Subdivision 6.2.6         Calculating probable limits of error
                    6.51      Equation 6.1—Probable limits of error for closing carbon stocks        69
                    6.52      Equation 6.2—Estimating number of plots required to meet the target probable limits of error                                                                                                        70
Subdivision 6.2.7         Allometric equations
                    6.53      Equation 7.1—Form of allometric equations                                       70
                    6.54      Equation 7.2—Total tree biomass or above-ground biomass for a dead or burnt tree 71
                    6.55      Equation 7.3—Total biomass for a biomass sample tree or test tree    71
Subdivision 6.2.8         Root biomass from a root:shoot ratio
                    6.56      Estimating root biomass from a root:shoot ratio                                 71
                    6.57      Equation 7.4—Above-ground biomass for a biomass sample tree, or test tree          72
                    6.58      Equation 7.5—Total root biomass of a tree                                        72
                    6.59      Equation 7.6—Dry weight of biomass components of trees                73
                    6.60      Equation 7.7—Mean of residuals                                                       73
                    6.61      Equation 7.8—weighting factor for weighted least squares regression 73
Division 6.3                 Data collection
                    6.62      Data collection for project greenhouse gas emissions                        74
                    6.63      Data collection for project greenhouse gas sequestration                   74
Part 7                           Monitoring, record-keeping and reporting requirements
Division 7.1                 General
                      7.1      Application                                                                                       75
Division 7.2                 Monitoring requirements
                      7.2      Project monitoring                                                                             75
Division 7.3                 Record-keeping requirements
                      7.3      Records that must be kept                                                                76
                      7.4      Stratum records                                                                                76
                      7.5      Project tree measures                                                                        76
                      7.6      Carbon stock calculations                                                                 76
                      7.7      Allometric functions                                                                          76
                      7.8      Sampling plans and project operational records                                 77
                      7.9      Quality assurance and control                                                            77
                    7.10      Fuel use                                                                                           77
Division 7.4                 Offsets report requirements
Subdivision 7.4.1         Information that must be included in the first offsets report
                    7.11      General                                                                                             78
                    7.12      Project information                                                                            78
                    7.13      Strata description and status                                                             78
                    7.14      Baseline land use history and forest cover history for strata                78
                    7.15      Quality assurance and control                                                            79
Subdivision 7.4.2         Information that must be included in all offsets reports
                    7.16      General                                                                                             79
                    7.17      Project information                                                                            79
                    7.18      Strata location and area                                                                     80
                    7.19      Stratum description and status                                                          80
                    7.20      Carbon stocks for stratum                                                                 80
                    7.21      Carbon stocks for plots                                                                    81
                    7.22      Management regime and PPACS modelling                                        82
                    7.23      Basis of allometric function applied to a stratum                                82
                    7.24      Application of allometric functions                                                     82
                    7.25      Sampling plans                                                                                 83
                    7.26      Growth disturbance events                                                                83
                    7.27      Quality assurance and control                                                            83
                    7.28      Fuel use                                                                                           84
Part 1              Preliminary
1.1           Name of determination
                This Determination is the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) (Measurement Based Methods for New Farm Forestry Plantations) Methodology Determination 2014.
1.2           Duration
         Note    See subsection 122(1) of the Act.
                This Determination:
                     (a)   commences on the day after it is registered on the Federal Register of Legislative Instruments; and
                     (b)   unless sooner revoked, expires on the day before it would otherwise be repealed under subsection 50(1) of the Legislative Instruments Act 2003.
                         Note    This Determination will expire on the first 31 March or 30 September on or after the tenth anniversary of its registration.
1.3           Definitions
                In this Determination:
above-ground biomass means all material in a tree above the soil substrate and includes stem, crown, and attached dead material such as dead branches.
Act means the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011.
actual location coordinates means spatial coordinates that are collected on the ground using a global positioning system, and that define the location of plots, biomass sample plots and biomass sample trees.
allometric data range means the range between the smallest and largest values of the explanatory variables included within an allometric dataset.
allometric dataset means variables that are:
(a)    recorded from biomass sample trees; and
(b)   used to develop or validate an allometric function.
allometric domain means the specific conditions under which an allometric function is applicable.
allometric function means a regression equation that describes relationships between biometric measures of specified plant taxa which is used to predict biomass, and may be stratum-specific or region-specific-.
allometric report means a document that describes a project proponent’s approach to the development of allometric functions and that meets the requirements set out in section 5.13.
below-ground biomass means all material in a tree below the soil substrate and includes the tap root or lignotuber, and the lateral roots.
biomass means dry, vegetation-derived organic matter.
biomass component means sections of trees that are divided on the basis of structure or form or both.
biomass sample plot means an area of land that occurs within a biomass sample site and is delineated in accordance with Part 5.
biomass sample site means an area of land in which biomass sample plots are located for the purpose of developing a regional function.
biomass sample tree means a tree selected for destructive sampling in order to develop an allometric function.
burnt tree means a tree that has lost biomass in a fire
carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) means the equivalent mass of carbon dioxide for a given mass of greenhouse gas or carbon. For carbon it is calculated by multiplying the mass of elemental carbon by .
carbon inventory means an estimation of carbon stocks by sampling and measurements conducted in accordance with Subdivision 5.1.2.
carbon stock means the quantity of carbon, expressed as carbon dioxide equivalent, held within specified components of project forest biomass.
CFI function means a stratum-specific or regional function that was developed in compliance with an existing CFI methodology determination.
CFI Mapping Guidelines means the Carbon Farming Initiative Mapping Guidelines, as published from time to time, to be used for mapping project areas and strata within project areas, and available on the Department’s website.
CFI methodology determination means a legislative instrument made under section 106 or varied under section 114 of the Act.
clearfelling means a management practice resulting in the felling of all trees in a group of trees.
closing carbon stocks means the carbon stocks, expressed as carbon dioxide equivalent, estimated to be held within specified components of project forest biomass occurring within a stratum at the end of a reporting period.
commencement means the point in time at which preparation of a stratum for planting begins.
commercial thinning means a management practice where:
                     (a)   project trees are thinned;
                     (b)   a harvested wood product is created; and
                     (c)   harvest residue is created.
coppice system means a system where trees are re-established by regrowth from in‑situ roots or lignotubers.
coarse woody debris CWD means dead woody stem or branch components, or both, that:
                     (a)   have a cross-sectional diameter of more than 25 millimetres;
                     (b)   come from a project tree; and
                     (c)   occur at ground level.
crown means the above-ground tree biomass (including branches, twigs, petioles, and leaves) other than stems.
crown cover means the amount of land covered by the outer limits of the crown (viewed as a horizontal cross-section) of a tree, or collection of trees.
dead material means the non-living above-ground biomass originating from project trees.
declaration date, for a project, means the date on which the declaration of the project as an eligible offsets project under section 27 of the Act takes effect.
disturbance-affected stratum means a stratum that has been subject to a growth disturbance, other than fire—see section 3.6.
explanatory variable means the measured biometric variable used to estimate the response variable—see variable.
farm means:
                     (a)   any tract of land:
                                 (i)    which is used by a person for agriculture; and
                                (ii)    for which the person holds an estate in fee simple or a lease over the land; or
                     (b)   multiple tracts of land:
                                 (i)    which are used by the same person for agriculture; and
                                (ii)    for which the person holds an estate in fee simple or a lease over each tract of land; and
                               (iii)    to which the same methodology determination is applied, regardless of whether those tracts of land are touching.
fire-affected stratum means an area of project forest that has been burnt and that has been dealt with in accordance with Part 3.
fire emissions means emissions of methane (CH4) or nitrous oxide (N2O) arising from fire events.
fire event means an occurrence of a fire in a stratum or strata.
forest means land on which trees:
                     (a)   have attained, or have the potential to attain, a crown cover of at least 20% across the area of land; and
                     (b)   have reached, or have the potential to reach, a height of at least 2 metres.
forest cover—land has forest cover if the vegetation on the land includes trees that:
(a)      are 2 metres or more in height; and
(b)      provide crown cover of at least 20% of the land.
fraction remaining —see section 5.27.
fuel emissions means emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O), or methane (CH4) arising from use of fossil fuels to deliver project activities within the project area.
FullCAM means the latest publicly released version on the Department’s website of the Full Carbon Accounting Model.
FullCAM Guidelines means the Guidance for using the Full Carbon Accounting Model (FullCAM) in the Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI) methodologies for the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) (Measurement Based Methods for New Farm Forestry Plantations) Methodology Determination 2014 (this Determination), first published and made available on the Department’s website on 31 July 2014 and includes any minor amendments to those Guidelines uploaded by the Department to its website from time to time.
Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative has the meaning given in the Regulations.
Greenhouse FriendlyTM forestry project means an existing forestry project that has been accredited under the Commonwealth Government’s Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative.
growth disturbance — means a natural disturbance that may or may not also be a significant reversal, see section 3.5.
 means the global warming potential of methane as prescribed in the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Regulations 2008 as in force at the time that the offsets report was submitted or was required to be submitted, whichever occurs first.
 means the global warming potential of nitrous oxide as prescribed in the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Regulations 2008 as in force at the time that the offsets report was submitted or was required to be submitted, whichever occurs first.
harvest means a management practice involving commercial thinning or clearfelling.
harvest project means a project that consists of project trees established as a new farm forestry plantation or a Greenhouse FriendlyTM forestry project and classified as such under section 2.5 or reclassified under section 4.1.
harvest residue means the project tree biomass that remains on site after a harvest.
infill planting means the planting of project trees to replace mortalities of project trees planted at an earlier time—see section 3.5.
initial carbon stocks means the amount of carbon, expressed in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents, estimated to have been held within specified components of the project forest biomass occurring within a stratum on the declaration date.
intended location coordinates means spatial coordinates from a grid overlay used to define the proposed on‑ground location of plots and biomass sample plots.
lateral root means the woody material that extends laterally from the tap root or lignotuber of a tree, and which forms part of the below-ground structure of the tree.
litter means fallen dead material originating from project trees that is equal to or less than 25 millimetres in diameter and may include fallen leaves, twigs, bark and small woody stems in various stages of decomposition.
management regime means the spatial extent and timing of events that is undertaken to establish, grow, manage and harvest a harvest project, and includes disturbance events that occur.
management practice has the meaning given in section 4.5
measurement strata means a strata established for the purpose of a carbon inventory.
modelling strata means strata established for FullCAM modelling.
modelling period means the period, set at 100 years, over which the management regime is modelled in FullCAM.
                         Note    The modelling period is selected to allow for a reasonable period of time in which to run the FullCAM modelling. It is not linked to, or determined by, the permanence period applicable for a sequestration offsets project under the Act.
new farm forestry plantation means a plantation:
                     (a)   established on or after 1 July 2010 for the harvest of wood products; and
                     (b)   occupying land that has been cleared of trees and used for agricultural purposes for at least 5 years prior to the establishment of the plantation; and
                     (c)   in an area that, according to the CFI rainfall map, receives the amount of long term average annual rainfall mentioned in an item in the following table; and
                     (d)   occupies the area mentioned in the item.
Farm forestry plantations

Item
Rainfall
Area

1
400 mm or more
No more than the smaller of the following areas:
(a) no more than 100 ha;
(b) no more than 30% of a farm.

2
less than 400 mm
No more than the smaller of the following areas:
(a) no more than 300 ha;
(b) no more than 30% of a farm.

 
non-commercial thinning means a management practice where:
                     (a)   project trees are thinned;
                     (b)   no harvested wood product is created; and
                     (c)   the debris from thinning is retained on site.
non-project forest means forest within the project area that was not established as a direct result of a project carried out under this Determination.
non-project tree means a tree within the project area that was neither planted, nor otherwise established, as a direct result of a project carried out under this Determination.
ortho-rectified aerial imagery means an aerial photograph or satellite image geometrically-corrected for distortion to produce a uniform scale across the image.
permanent planting has the same meaning as in the Regulations.
permanent planting project means a project that consists of project trees established as a permanent planting and classified as such under section 2.5.
permanent sample plot (PSP) means a plot delineated in accordance with Part 5 and from within which measurements are periodically made to inventory carbon stocks. 
planting means the planting of project trees from seedlings or seed.
planting finish date means the date that planting of the stratum was completed.
planting start date means the date that planting started within a stratum.
plot means a defined area of land within the project area which can be a temporary sample plot or a permanent sample plot.
plot size means the horizontal area of the land included within the boundaries of a plot or biomass sample plot.
precision standard has the meaning given in section 5.3.
predicted project average carbon stocks (PPACS) means the prediction of the average carbon stocks of a project for a specified management regime over the modelling period, estimated using FullCAM.
predicted stratum average carbon stocks (PSACS) means the prediction of the average carbon stocks of a stratum for a specified management regime over the modelling period, estimated using FullCAM.
predictor measure —see the definitions for “explanatory variable” and “variable” in this section.
preparation burn means the controlled application of fire within a stratum to assist in the removal or suppression of ground‑level vegetation or fire fuel loads.
prescribed weed means any plant that is required by law to be removed.
probable limits of error means the confidence limits for an estimate expressed as a percentage of the mean.
project activity means an activity undertaken within the project area as part of the establishment and management of project forest.
project commencement means the earliest date for which there is documentary evidence that demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the Regulator, that planting has occurred in the project area.
project emissions means emissions of greenhouse gases occurring within the project area as a result of a project activity, from sources within the project greenhouse gas assessment boundary—see section 6.2.
project forest means an area of land covered by a forest of project trees at a specified time or during a specified reporting period.
project forest biomass means the biomass contained within project trees, litter, or CWD.
project removals means removals from the atmosphere of greenhouse gases caused as a result of project activities.
project tree means a tree that has been established through project activities.
regional function means an allometric function developed by or for a project proponent and which has an allometric domain which applies to more than one stratum.
Regulations means the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Regulations 2011.
replant system means a system where trees are re-established by planting or seeding.
root biomass means the biomass of a tree occurring below the level of the soil substrate.
root:shoot ratio (R:S) means the ratio of below-ground biomass to above‑ground biomass.
rotation length means the period of time from forest establishment or re-establishment to clearfelling for a harvest project.
sampling plan means a document that identifies the quantity, intended and actual location coordinates of permanent sample plots, biomass sample plots, and the quantity and actual location coordinates of biomass sample trees, within a stratum or the geographic limits of an allometric domain—see Subdivision 5.1.3. 
significant reversal means a reversal of the removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere if the natural disturbance that caused, or is likely to have caused, the reversal occurred on at least:
                     (a)   5% of the project area, or project areas in total; or
                     (b)   50 hectares of the project area or areas;
whichever area is the smaller.
size class means a category of trees delimited by stem diameter, stem cross-sectional area or other biometric measure.
standard margin means a distance from the boundary of the tree planting lines that defines the stratum boundary and is determined in accordance with section 3.3.
stem means the above-ground woody structural supports of a tree that includes the trunk and limbs extending to the crown.
strata means more than one stratum.
stratum means an area in the project area that is determined to have common characteristics in accordance with the requirements of Part 3.
stratum area means the area of land that is occupied by a stratum, expressed in hectares.
stratum identifier means a unique numeric, alpha-numeric, or text string that is used to refer to and identify a stratum in the project area.
stratum-specific function means an allometric function developed by or for a project proponent from an allometric dataset collected exclusively from within a single stratum, to which the function is intended to be applied.
systematic random sampling means an approach to sampling where sampling locations are systematically determined using a randomly placed square grid
t CO2e means a unit of measurement defined as tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalence (within the meaning of the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007).
t-test means a statistical test to determine whether a series of collected observations is suitable for making a prediction about a population.
tap root or lignotuber means a woody part of a tree connected directly to the stem which attaches it to the ground and extends downwards into the soil, with lateral roots extending from it.
target plot size has the meaning given in section 5.21.
Technical Reference Guide means the Technical Reference Guide for the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) (Measurement Based Methods for New Farm Forestry Plantations) Methodology Determination 2014 first published and made available on the Department’s website on 30 May 2014 and includes any minor amendments to that Guide uploaded by the Department to its website from time to time.
temporary sampling plot (TSP) means a defined area of land that is delineated in accordance with Part 5 and from within which measurements are taken to estimate carbon stocks in a carbon inventory. 
test tree means a project tree that has been randomly selected from within a biomass sample plot for measurement as part of the process for validating regional functions or converting stratum-specific functions to regional functions.
tree means a perennial plant that has primary supporting structures consisting of secondary xylem.
tree type means trees that are of the same species and equivalent physical status (live, burnt or dead).
variable means any characteristics, number, or quantity that can be measured or counted which here comprise either non‑destructive measurements of trees (explanatory variables) used to estimate their biomass (response variable), based on an allometric function.
weighted least squares method means an algebraic procedure for fitting linear or non-linear regression equations to data in which the contribution of units to the estimate of dispersion is weighted.
weighted residual means the difference between measured and predicted (from a regression equation) values of the response variable (tree biomass) multiplied by a weighting factor, and as  calculated in accordance with section 6.60.
         Note    Other words and expressions used in this Determination have the meaning given by the Act, including:
baseline
                     crediting period
                     eligible offsets project
                     emission
                     methodology determination
                     native forest
                     natural disturbance
                     offsets project
                     offsets report
                     project
                     project area
                     project proponent
                     Regulator; and
                     reporting period.
1.4           Kind of project to which this Determination applies
         Note    See paragraph 106(1)(a) of the Act.
         (1)   This Determination applies to the following kinds of project:
                     (a)   the establishment of a permanent planting on or after 1 July 2007; or
                     (b)   a forestry project accredited under the Commonwealth Government’s Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative; or
                     (c)   a permanent planting accredited under:
                                 (i)    the New South Wales Government’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme; or
                                (ii)    the Australian Capital Territory Government’s Greenhouse Gas Abatement Scheme; or
                     (d)   a permanent planting established before 1 July 2007 for which there is documentary evidence of a kind mentioned in subsection (2) that demonstrates, to the satisfaction of the Regulator, that the primary purpose of the planting was generation of carbon offsets; or
                     (e)   the establishment of a new farm forestry plantation.
         (2)   Documentary evidence, for paragraph (1)(d):
                     (a)   must be dated no later than 2 years after the date the plantings were established; and
                     (b)   may include contracts for the sale of offsets; and
                     (c)   must show that carbon sequestration rights had been registered for the plantings; and
                     (d)   must include a statutory declaration that the plantings were entirely privately funded.
 
Part 2              Requirements for declaration as eligible project
         Note    See paragraphs 27(4)(c) and 106(1)(b) of the Act.
2.1           Eligible projects
                To be declared an eligible offsets project, a project to which this Determination applies must meet the requirements in this Part.
                         Note    In addition, a project must meet the requirements in section 27 of the Act and in the Regulations, including a requirement that the project may not be an excluded offsets project (see regulations 3.36 and 3.37).
2.2           Location
                The project area must be located within Australia, excluding external territories.
2.3           Project land characteristics
         (1)   For at least 5 years before project commencement, the project area must have included:
                     (a)   land used for grazing or cropping; or
                     (b)   land that was fallow between grazing or cropping activities; or
                     (c)   a combination of (a) and (b).
         (2)   If project trees are established by planting on the land specified in subsection (1), the project trees in the planting will have the potential to attain:
                     (a)   a height of 2 metres or more; and
                     (b)   a crown cover of at least 20% over the total area of the stratum in which the project trees are located.
                         Note    The potential to attain the requirements in subsection (2) may be demonstrated by the species of trees to be planted, a description of the growth characteristics of the species and the anticipated crown cover across the stratum area when project trees are at maturity.
2.4           Project mechanisms
         (1)   The project must establish and maintain a planting which is one of the following:
                     (a)   a permanent planting;
                     (b)   a new farm forestry plantation; or
                     (c)   a forestry project accredited under the Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative.
         (2)   The planting specified in subsection (1) must be:
                     (a)   established at a density sufficient for the trees to have the potential to achieve forest cover; and
                     (b)   established and maintained consistently with the project operation requirements in Part 4.
                         Note    The spatial configuration of a planting may be in belts or blocks provided the planting density provides the potential to achieve forest cover.
2.5           Project types
         (1)   The Regulator must be notified in writing of the project type being undertaken at the time of an application for a declaration of an eligible offsets project in accordance with this section.
                         Note    An application for a declaration of an eligible offsets project is an application made under section 22 of the Act.
         (2)   Subject to subsection (3), a project must be identified as a particular project type in accordance with the following conditions:
(a)   if the project mechanism is a permanent planting then the project type must be identified as a permanent planting project; or
                     (b)   if the project mechanism is:
                                 (i)    a new farm forestry plantation; or
                                (ii)    a forestry project accredited under the Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative;
                            then the project must be identified as a harvest project.
         (3)   If the project mechanism is both a permanent planting and a forestry project accredited under the Greenhouse FriendlyTM initiative then the project may be identified at the request of the proponent as either a permanent planting project or harvest project.
         (4)   If the project is identified as a harvest project, then:
                     (a)   the proposed management regime must be provided with the application for declaration of an eligible offsets project; and
                     (b)   the project cannot be identified as a permanent planting project at a later time.
                         Note    Section 4.1 provides the ability to change a permanent planting project to a harvest project if certain conditions are satisfied.
2.6           Identification of project area
                The boundaries of the project area must be delineated in accordance with the CFI Mapping Guidelines and Method 1 of the Technical Reference Guide.
                         Note    Regulation 3.1 of the Regulations requires provision, in an application for a declaration of an eligible offsets project, a geospatial map of the project area that meets the requirements of the CFI Mapping Guidelines.
 
Part 3              Delineating boundaries
3.1           Division of project area into strata
         (1)   Before the submission of the first offsets report, a project proponent must define within the project area one or more strata in accordance with the CFI Mapping Guidelines and Method 2 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (2)   The project proponent may define new strata that comply with Method 2 and Method 3 of the Technical Reference Guide at any time.
         (3)   The boundaries and area of a stratum must be defined in accordance with Method 3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (4)   If the boundaries of a stratum are redefined, they must be redefined in accordance with the requirements set out in Method 3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
3.2           Requirements for strata
         (1)   A stratum must have been planted with one or more species of project trees.
                         Note    Project proponents may also define a stratum based on any of the following:
                                               –     the age of project trees;
–       tree species;
                                               –     observed or measured trends in growth;
                                               –     geographic regions;
                                               –     climatic conditions;
                                               –     soil types;
                                               –     disturbance history;
                                               –     land management units;
                                               –     management regime; or
                                               –     any other characteristics that may influence growth of project trees.
Requirements for measurement strata
         (2)   For the purposes of undertaking a carbon inventory under Subdivision 5.1.2, measurement strata must be established in accordance with Method 2.3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (3)   Any area within a measurement stratum that:
                     (a)   has been subject to a disturbance event; and
                     (b)   is greater than 10 hectares in size;
                must be defined as a separate stratum in accordance with Method 3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
Requirements for modelling strata
         (4)   If the project is identified as a harvest project in accordance with subsection 2.5(3), modelling strata must be established in accordance with Method 2.4 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (5)   If the project proponent elects to use a root:shoot ratio for the purpose of estimating below-ground biomass under Subdivision 5.1.6, modelling strata must be established in accordance with Method 2.4 of the Technical Reference Guide.
3.3           Delineating stratum boundaries
         (1)   This section sets out the requirements for:
                     (a)   delineating the boundaries of a stratum included within the project area; and
                     (b)   deriving an estimate of the stratum area.
         (2)   A project proponent must delineate the boundaries of a stratum included within the project area by generating a set of spatial coordinates that define the geographic limits of the land area included within each stratum in accordance with Method 3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
Project forest boundary
         (3)   The project forest boundary for a stratum must be defined in accordance with Method 3.1 of the Technical Reference Guide.
Stratum boundary and stratum area
         (4)   A geographic information system must be used to apply a standard margin to the project forest boundary in accordance with Method 3.1 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (5)   The stratum boundary must not include land that:
                     (a)   lies outside the project area; or
                     (b)   is non-project forest.
         (6)   If application of the standard margin would result in the mapped geographic limits of the stratum:
                     (a)   overlapping the geographic limits of a second stratum—then the stratum boundary must be mapped to a point equidistant between the two strata along the length of the area where the overlap would otherwise have occurred; or
                     (b)   exceeding the geographic limits of the project area—then the stratum boundary must align with the boundary of the project area.
         (7)   For the purposes of calculating the stratum area, the boundary of the standard margin delineates the boundary of the stratum.
3.4           Ortho-rectified aerial imagery
                If ortho‑rectified aerial imagery is used to identify the limits of the project forest area and stratum boundary:
                     (a)   the imagery must meet the accuracy requirements specified in the CFI Mapping Guidelines;
                     (b)   the image must be of sufficient quality and resolution to allow the clear identification of the spatial limits of activities which established the project forest.
3.5           Growth disturbances
         (1)   This section applies if an event occurs that is likely to affect significantly the growth characteristics of project trees in a stratum or part of a stratum that has been previously been reported in an offsets report (a growth disturbance).
                         Note    A growth disturbance is a natural disturbance that may or may not also be a significant reversal. The growth disturbance is required to be identified and delineated, but may not necessarily meet the thresholds to be considered a significant reversal under the Regulations.
                                      When a natural disturbance that is also a significant reversal has occurred, the proponent is required to meet their obligations as outlined under section 81 of the Act, which include provisions for notifying the Regulator and re-establishing carbon stocks. Examples of natural disturbance events include floods, fires, droughts, pest attacks, or diseases that could be taken to cause a significant reversal under the Regulations.
         (2)   The project proponent must, within 6 months after the growth disturbance, delineate the boundaries of the land occupied by project trees affected by the disturbance in accordance Method 4.1 of the Technical Reference Guide and subsection (3) or (4) below.
         (3)   If the growth disturbance affects an area of more than 10 hectares in a stratum, the project proponent must, before submitting the offsets report that relates to the time when the growth disturbance occurred, revise the affected stratum in accordance with Method 4.2 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (4)   If the growth disturbance affects an area of 10 hectares or less in a stratum, the project proponent may, before submitting the offsets report that relates to the time when the growth disturbance occurred:
                     (a)   define a new stratum to include the growth disturbance-affected area in accordance with section 3.6; or
                     (b)   continue to treat the growth disturbance-affected area as belonging to a single stratum.
         (5)   The death of project trees is not a growth disturbance if infill planting is undertaken to replace the dead project trees within 36 months of the planting finish date for the stratum.
3.6           Revision of strata affected by growth disturbance
         (1)   Subject to sections 3.7 to 3.9, if the whole stratum is affected by a growth disturbance, the stratum must be revised by creating a new stratum identifier and labelling the newly created stratum:
                     (a)   if the disturbance is fire—a fire-affected stratum; or
                     (b)   otherwise—a disturbance-affected stratum;
                in accordance with Method 4.2 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (2)   If only a part of the stratum is affected by the growth disturbance, then the stratum must be revised by excising that portion of the stratum affected by the growth disturbance and defining this area as a separate stratum, which:
                     (a)   complies with the requirements for a stratum set out in section 3.2; and
                     (b)   is labelled:
                                 (i)    if the disturbance was fire—a fire-affected stratum; or
                                (ii)    otherwise—a disturbance-affected stratum.
3.7           Requirements for disturbance-affected strata
                If a disturbance-affected stratum is created, then for the purposes of calculating carbon stock change in accordance with Subdivision 6.2.3, the initial carbon stocks for the disturbance-affected stratum must be assumed to be zero.
3.8           Requirements for fire-affected strata
                If a fire-affected stratum is created:
                     (a)   a carbon inventory must be conducted in both the fire-affected stratum and the stratum from which the fire-affected stratum was excised, within 12 months after the fire event;
                     (b)   an estimate of the fire emissions from any fire-affected stratum, and the standard error associated with this estimate, must be calculated in accordance with Subdivision 6.2.5; and
                     (c)   for the purposes of calculating carbon stock change in accordance with Subdivision 6.2.3, the initial carbon stocks for the fire-affected stratum must be assumed to be zero.
3.9           Requirements for revisions of strata boundaries
         (1)   Subject to subsection (3), where a stratum or a stratum boundary is redefined, revised boundaries must comply with the requirements for delineating stratum boundaries in accordance with section 3.3 and Method 3.1 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (2)   Subject to subsection (3), if a revision, or cumulative revisions, of the boundaries of a stratum change the stratum area by more than 5% between any reporting periods; then a carbon inventory which includes the revised stratum area must be conducted in accordance with Subdivision 5.1.2 no earlier than 6 months before the end of the current reporting period.
         (3)   Where a stratum area is reduced to zero through redefining stratum boundaries in accordance with section 3.6, subsections 3.9(1) and 3.9(2) do not apply.
         (4)   If a stratum is defined and reported within an offsets report, the stratum identifier associated with that stratum must continue to be reported in subsequent offsets reports as having been associated with the project area even where:
                     (a)   the stratum area is reduced to zero through revising the stratum boundary; or
                     (b)   the stratum is redefined so that its entire area is replaced with other strata.
         (5)   Where subsection (4) applies:
                     (a)   values of zero must be recorded against the stratum identifier for the closing carbon stocks; and
                     (b)   the zero value must be applied for the purpose of calculating the carbon stock change for a stratum in accordance with section 6.10.
                         Note    A project proponent must generate and keep records in relation to each stratum in accordance with the requirements set out in section 7.4.
Part 4              Project operation
         Note    See paragraphs 27(4)(c), 35(2)(a) and 106(1)(b) of the Act and regulations 1.12 and 3.26 of the Regulations.
4.1           Change of project type
         (1)   A permanent planting project type may be changed to a harvest project type if the following requirements are met to the satisfaction of the Regulator:
                     (a)   the permanent planting satisfies the requirements for a new farm forestry plantation;
                     (b)   a PPACS for the project is calculated in accordance with section 4.9; and
                     (c)   the total number of carbon credits that have been issued for the project is less than the PPACS calculated in paragraph (b) above.
         (2)   A written request to change the project type must be provided to the Regulator with evidence demonstrating to the satisfaction of the Regulator that the requirements in subsection (1) are met.
         (3)   The Regulator must provide written confirmation of the change of project type from a permanent planting project to a harvest project before any removal of biomass from project trees is permitted to occur unless the removal is in accordance with section 4.4.
4.2           Preparation burns
                Subject to section 4.5, a preparation burn may be applied to each stratum either at commencement or between commencement and planting.
4.3           Removal of non-project trees for a project
         (1)   Subject to this section, non-project trees must not be removed from the project area, or otherwise disturbed, for the purposes of undertaking a project.
         (2)   Non-project trees may be removed from the project area, or otherwise disturbed, only in the following circumstances:
                     (a)   if the non-project trees are prescribed weeds, they may be removed at any time during the life of the project;
                     (b)   if removal of the non-project trees is otherwise required or authorised by law, they may be removed in accordance with the relevant law; or
                     (c)   if, at commencement, non-project trees:
                                 (i)    cover a total land area that represents less than 5% of the stratum area, as measured by crown cover;
                                (ii)    are not native forest; and
                               (iii)    are less than 2 metres in height;
                            then they can be removed from within the stratum at any time from commencement to 6 months after planting.
4.4           Removal of project tree biomass from a permanent planting project
         (1)   Project tree biomass may be removed from a permanent planting project area only in the following circumstances:
                     (a)   for biomass sampling;
                     (b)   to manage a natural disturbance;
                     (c)   for thinning for ecological purposes
                     (d)   to remove debris for fire management;
                     (e)   to remove firewood, fruits, nuts, seeds, or material used for fencing or as craft materials, if those things are not removed for sale;
                      (f)   in accordance with traditional indigenous practices or native title rights; or
                     (c)   where otherwise required or authorised by law.
         (2)   For the avoidance of doubt, removal of biomass for commercial purposes, for example, through harvest, is not permitted for a permanent planting project.
                         Note    The net abatement calculations for a permanent planting project do not account for the intentional removal of biomass, and as such, this kind of removal is not permitted.
4.5           Specifying the management regime for a harvest project
         (1)   The management regime must specify each management practice proposed to be undertaken for the harvest project.
         (2)   Management practices include:
                     (a)   weed control;
                     (b)   planting (initial and re-establishment);
                     (c)   fertilizer application;
                     (d)   pruning;
                     (e)   non-commercial thinning;
                      (f)   harvest;
                     (g)   debris management by chopper rolling; and
                     (h)   rotation lengths consistent with the species planted and regional climate.
4.6           Change of management regime for a harvest project
                The management regime for a harvest project may be changed if the number of carbon credits issued for the project for all previous offsets reports is less than the PPACS value for the new management regime as calculated in accordance with Equation 2.10 in section 6.18.
                         Note    Requirements for the calculation of the PPACS is detailed in section 4.9 and the calculation is provided in section 6.18. Under some circumstances, changes to the management regime can increase the value for the PPACS calculated for the project due to:
–         increases in rotation length;
–         decreases in the removal of biomass through changes to thinning, pruning or other management practices;
–         planting species with a higher growth rates;
–         altering the management of harvest residue.
4.7           Removal of project tree biomass from a harvest project
         (1)   Project tree biomass may be removed from a harvest project area only in the following circumstances:
                     (a)   for biomass sampling;
                     (b)   to manage a natural disturbance;   
                     (c)   where required or authorised by law; or
                     (d)   for harvest, in accordance with the management regime.
         (2)   Project trees may be non-commercially thinned provided the thinned biomass is retained on site and unburnt.
         (3)   Harvest residue must be retained on site and unburnt.
4.8           Requirements for operation of a harvest project
         (1)   After any clearfelling event in accordance with paragraph 4.7(1)(d) the proponent must re-establish the project trees by planting, seeding or coppice regrowth.
         (2)   Where the management regime involves the clearfelling of project trees the period between clearfelling and re-establishment must be equal to or greater than the minimum period specified in paragraph 4.10(7)(b).
4.9           Estimating predicted project average carbon stocks
         (1)   If the project type is a harvest project, the predicted project average carbon stocks (PPACS) value must be calculated in accordance with this section and the FullCAM Guidelines.
         (2)   The output data for the “C mass of trees” and “C mass of debris” parameters must be generated using FullCAM.
         (3)   The predicted stratum average carbon stock (PSACS) must be calculated for each modelling stratum in accordance with the following requirements:
                     (a)   for each month of the modelling period the “C mass of trees” and “C mass of debris” output in subsection (2) must be summed;
                     (b)   the average monthly carbon stock value over the modelling period must be calculated by determining the average of the value from paragraph (a); and
                     (c)   the average monthly carbon stock value must be multiplied by the area of the modelling stratum.
         (4)   The PSACS determined in accordance with subsection (3) must be summed for all strata to produce the PPACS.
4.10        Requirements for estimating predicted project average carbon stocks
         (1)   If the project type is a harvest project, the project proponent must not claim crediting for carbon stocks where this would result in the total credits received exceeding the most recently reported PPACS value.
                         Note    The PPACS sets the limit on the claimable change in carbon stocks for a project through the calculation of net abatement in Part 6.
         (2)   Each management practice specified in the management regime must be included in FullCAM simulations for all rotations.
         (3)   Subject to section 4.8, if the project proponent changes the tree species within a modelling stratum:
                     (a)   the species must be documented; and
                     (b)   the species with the slower growth rate must be used for the purpose of estimating the PPACS value.
         (4)   Project proponents must re-calculate the PPACS value for the reporting period within 3 months prior to the submission of the offsets report using the latest publicly-available version of FullCAM. 
         (5)   If any of the following events:
                     (a)   a change in management practice;
                     (b)   a natural disturbance; or
                     (c)   a variation of a modelling stratum boundary;
                occurred during the reporting period, they must be included in the re-calculation of the PPACS value.
Requirements for rotation lengths
         (6)   When calculating the PPACS value a proponent must provide information on the rotation lengths.
         (7)   The rotation lengths specified in subsection (2) must:
                     (a)   meet the requirements of subparagraph 4.5(2)(h);
                     (b)   be separated by a period of a minimum of 15 months between harvest events and re-establishment events. 
Part 5              Methods for estimating net project abatement 
Division 5.1           Estimating project removals
Subdivision 5.1.1 General
5.1           General
                This Division sets out the requirements that must be met when estimating the carbon dioxide equivalent net abatement amount for an eligible offsets project to which this Determination applies.
Subdivision 5.1.2 Carbon inventory
5.2           Carbon inventory
         (1)   A requirement under this Determination to inventory carbon is a requirement to conduct an inventory in accordance with this Subdivision and Methods 5.1 and 5.2 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (2)   The most recent map of a stratum and the most recent stratum area estimate generated in accordance with Part 3 must be used to inventory carbon.
         (3)   For the purpose of calculating closing carbon stocks for a stratum () a carbon inventory must have been conducted within the stratum no earlier than 6 months before the end date of the reporting period ().
         (4)   Subject to subsection (5) and (6), a carbon inventory must be conducted for each stratum at the following times:
                     (a)   no earlier than 6 months before the end of the first reporting period for the project; and
                     (b)   at least every 5 years from the first offsets report and any subsequent offsets report that calculates a carbon stock for the stratum.
                     (c)   as specified in paragraph 3.8(a) or 3.9(2)(a).
                         Note    Sections 3.8 and 3.9 deal with requirements for fire-affected strata and revisions of strata boundaries.
         (5)   If a stratum has not experienced a disturbance event since the last carbon inventory was completed, the project proponent may report the following values from the previous offsets report for the stratum:
                     (a)   carbon stocks; and
                     (b)   standard error;
                for the current reporting period.
         (6)   If the project is a harvest project, a carbon inventory is not required for a stratum if the carbon stock for the project has reached the PPACS value calculated for the project in accordance with section 4.9.
Sampling plans
         (7)   A sampling plan for the carbon inventory must be developed and documented in accordance with Method 6 of the Technical Reference Guide when one or more of the following occurs:
                     (a)   a carbon inventory is undertaken;
                     (b)   an allometric function is developed, updated, or validated in accordance with Subdivisions 5.1.8 to 5.1.12.
         (8)   The sampling plan for the carbon inventory must contain:
                     (a)   a description of the strata and the strata identifiers to which the sampling plan refers;
                     (b)   hard- and soft-copy maps showing the geographic boundaries of the stratum and the grid overlay;
                     (c)   the plot size to be applied within the stratum;
                     (d)   a description of plot shape;
                     (e)   details of the sampling grids for plot location, including the grid size (hectares) and orientation for each grid; 
                      (f)   maps showing the position of all PSPs and TSPs;
                     (g)   the location coordinates of all PSPs and TSPs; and
                     (h)   details of any variation between the location coordinates of plots and, if the variance exceeds thresholds prescribed in section 5.3, the details of the option used under that section and any corrective measures that were taken.
Plot establishment
         (9)   Plots must be established in accordance with Method 7 and Method 8.1 of the Technical Reference Guide.
Plot assessment
       (10)   Subject to section 5.3, plots must be assessed during the carbon inventory in accordance with Method 8.3 and Method 9 of the Technical Reference Guide, and meet the following requirements:
                     (a)   a plot must be at least 0.02 hectares in size;
                     (b)   each plot must be assigned a unique identifier; and
                     (c)   all plots must be marked with a survey mark that:
                                 (i)    is fire and flood resistant; and
                                (ii)    allows the plot to be located for at least 5 years.
5.3           Precision standard
         (1)   The precision standard that must be achieved for the reporting period is a probable limits of error (PLE) of less than or equal to 10% for the estimate of the closing carbon stocks for a project.
         (2)   The PLE for the estimate of the closing carbon stocks for a project must be calculated using Equation 6.1 and in accordance with section 6.51.  
         (3)   The PLE must be calculated at the 90% confidence level.
         (4)   The minimum number of plots must be established in accordance with Table 2 in Method 8 of the Technical Reference Guide.
                         Note    More plots may be required to achieve the precision standard for the estimate of project carbon stocks. 
         (5)   The carbon inventory must meet the requirements of the precision standard:
                     (a)   in accordance with Method 8.2 of the Technical Reference Guide; and
                     (b)   in a reporting period at least once every 5 years.
         (6)   Subject to subsection (7), if the precision standard is not met for a reporting period a project proponent must undertake one of the following options:
Option 1 
                     (a)   Calculate the estimate of project carbon stocks for the reporting period in accordance with Division 6.2 and apply the value for the lower closing carbon stocks for the project in accordance with the requirements in section 6.15; or
Option 2: 
                     (b)   Establish and assess more plots in accordance with Methods 7 to 9 of the Technical Reference Guide until the precision standard is met.
         (7)   Option 1 specified at paragraph (6)(a) must only be undertaken if the calculated PLE is less than or equal to 20% for the estimate of the closing carbon stocks for a project.
Subdivision 5.1.3 Allometric functions
5.4           Allometric functions for live project trees
         (1)   The project proponent must apply at least one of the following classes of allometric function to estimate the biomass in project trees occurring in each plot within the stratum:
                     (a)   a stratum-specific function;
                     (b)   a regional function; or
                     (c)   a CFI function.
         (2)   A project proponent may only apply an allometric function where:
                     (a)   the requirements set out in this Subdivision are met; and
                     (b)   the compatibility and validation tests specified in Subdivision 5.1.4 are satisfied.
         (3)   Subject to section 5.15, an allometric function must be applied only to project trees that occur within the allometric domain for that allometric function.
         (4)   Subject to section 5.15, if a particular kind of project tree does not occur within the allometric domain of any allometric function which satisfies the requirements of this Subdivision, then all occurrences of that kind of project tree within a plot must be noted and recorded as having zero biomass for the purpose of calculating carbon stocks under Division 6.2.
 
5.5           Stratum-specific functions
                If the project proponent chooses to apply a stratum-specific function to estimate the biomass in project trees occurring in each plot within the stratum then one of the following may be applied:
                     (a)   an existing stratum-specific function developed in accordance with Method 11 of the Technical Reference Guide;
                     (b)   a new stratum-specific function developed in accordance with Method 11 of the Technical Reference Guide; or
                     (c)   an existing stratum-specific function updated in accordance with Method 11.2 and 11.3 of the Technical Reference Guide.
5.6           Regional functions
                If the project proponent chooses to apply a regional function to estimate the biomass in project trees occurring in each plot within the stratum then the function must have been:
                     (a)   developed in accordance with Method 11.4 of the Technical Reference Guide; and
                     (b)   validated in accordance with Method 13 of the Technical Reference Guide.
5.7           CFI function
                If the project proponent chooses to apply a CFI function to estimate the biomass of project trees the function must be:
                     (a)   a stratum-specific or regional function that was developed and validated in compliance with an existing CFI methodology determination;
                     (b)   applied in a carbon inventory for the project in a previous reporting period; and
                     (c)   reported in an offsets report for which a certification of entitlement has been issued by the Regulator.
5.8           Converting a stratum-specific function to a regional function
                If a stratum-specific function is validated in accordance with Subdivision 5.1.4 for a stratum other than the stratum from which the function was developed, then:
                     (a)   the stratum-specific function may be reclassified as a regional function; and
                     (b)   the geographic limits of the allometric domain may be redefined so as to include the geographic limits of each stratum for which the stratum-specific function has been validated in accordance with Subdivision 5.1.4.
5.9           Allometric domain
         (1)   For each allometric function applied, the project proponent must clearly define the allometric domain for that function by recording and documenting the following in accordance with Method 10.2 of the Technical Reference Guide:
                     (a)   the tree species;
                     (b)   the allometric data range;
                     (c)   the predictor measures referenced by the allometric function;
                     (d)   the procedures used to measure the predictor measures; and
                     (e)   subject to subsection (2), the geographic area over which the allometric function is assumed to apply.
         (2)   For a stratum-specific function, the geographic limits of the allometric domain are defined as being the limits of the stratum boundary from which the allometric dataset was collected.
         (3)   To avoid doubt, an allometric function must not be used if the information requirements specified in subsection (1) cannot be met.
5.10        Regression analysis
         (1)   This section and Method 10.3 of the Technical Reference Guide must be followed by a project proponent when conducting regression analyses to develop allometric functions.
         (2)   An allometric function must not be used for the purpose of calculating carbon stocks in accordance with Division 6.2 unless the function:
                     (a)   has been derived by using regression analyses of biometric measures of biomass sample trees; and
                     (b)   relates the predictor measure collected from biomass sample trees to biomass estimates for the same trees.
Allowable regression forms
         (3)   If a project proponent uses allometric functions with either a single or multiple predictor measures:
                     (a)   data must not be transformed; and
                     (b)   the weighted least squares method must be applied to estimate the line of best fit.
         (4)   A weighting factor may be calculated to achieve:
                     (a)   homoscedasticity (constant variance); and
                     (b)   the best fit for the regression;
                using Equation 7.8 in accordance with section 6.61.
         (5)   An allometric function must take one of the following forms:
 
 
for example, the following forms:
 
                   
                      
                
                          
    Where:


Response variable, e.g. Total Tree Biomass, Above-Ground Biomass.

Predictor measure, e.g. stem diameter, tree height, crown dimensions.

Parameters to be estimated by regression analysis.

5.11        Minimum data requirements
         (1)   When developing an allometric function, the proponent must satisfy the minimum data requirements specified in Method 10.4 of the Technical Reference Guide.
         (2)   The regression analyses used to develop an allometric function must reference data collected from at least 20 individual biomass sample trees sampled from within the geographic limits of the relevant allometric domain.
         (3)   All biomass sample trees must:
                     (a)   be living and unburnt; and
                     (b)   have had the:
                                 (i)    above-ground biomass components measured in accordance with section 5.24; and
                                (ii)    root biomass components measured in accordance with section 5.25.
                         Note    Root biomass may be assessed by destructive sampling or by applying a root:shoot ratio (see section 5.25).
5.12        Regression requirements
         (1)   When developing an allometric function, the project proponent must satisfy the requirements specified in Method 10.5 of the Technical Reference Guide and this section.
         (2)   The regression relationship upon which the allometric function is based must be statistically significant.
         (3)   The following statistical tests must be undertaken on actual (not weighted) data for the biomass sample trees:
                     (a)   Equation 7.7 must be used in accordance with section 6.60 to demonstrate that the mean of the residuals for the allometric function is not significantly less than zero, where: p < 0.05 for a one-tailed, one-sample, t-test; and
                         Note    The test set out in paragraph (a) demonstrates that the allometric function is unlikely to overestimate biomass when the mean of the residuals is less than zero with confidence that is statistically significant (p