In the fight against climate change, the world cannot wait for some hoped-for perfect solution in the future. The crisis is upon us, and we need action now.
We need as many different strategies, tools, and ideas as possible; and we need them working right away. We need an all-of-the-above solution.
One such solution is the Voluntary Carbon Market (VCM).
The VCM is not the solution to climate change. But it is a solution.
In Carbon Done Correctly, Richard H. Lawrence, Jr. introduces the VCM through the lens of unsung heroes around the globe who are on the front lines of the fight against climate change.
The story begins in Honduras, where Proyecto Mirador builds fuel-efficient cookstoves in rural communities. Richard tells how a medical mission in the wake of Hurricane Mitch in 1998 spawned a multi-decade venture to build better, cleaner stoves which improve the lives of people in Honduras while reducing carbon emissions into our atmosphere. Always at the center of the story are the remarkable people who made it all possible.
But Proyecto Mirador needed funding to continue its work. Enter the VCM. Richard describes the process of Gold Standard Certification, by which an organization becomes eligible to sell carbon credits, and the subsequent establishing of Cool Effect, a crowdfunding marketplace for carbon-reducing projects around the world.
As Richard shows, for the VCM to succeed and reach its true global potential, transparency and quality must be at the heart of carbon-reducing projects: these projects must reach the Top of the Pyramid.
In Carbon Done Correctly, you will be inspired by the stories of the work that people are doing to combat climate change, and you will see how the VCM provides an essential tool in helping them, and other people in the future, continue and improve that work for the benefit of our planet
About the Author
Richard H. Lawrence, Jr., is the Founder and Executive Chairman of Overlook Investments Group, which he established in 1991. Overlook is an independent fund management company that invests in a concentrated portfolio of public equities throughout Asia, excluding Japan.
Richard is a director and co-founder of several non-profit organizations with specific focus on climate change mitigation. In 2004 Richard and his wife, Dee, founded Proyecto Mirador Foundation, a non-profit that has built over 330,000 fuel-efficient stoves in rural communities across Honduras and Guatemala. In 2016 the Lawrences founded Cool Effect, a non-profit online platform that enables individuals and Fortune 500 companies to offset their carbon emissions through the purchase of carbon credits from high integrity carbon reduction projects worldwide. In 2017 they established High Tide Foundation, a non-profit organization involved in climate change mitigation.
Richard is Chairman of the non-profit Carbon Mapper, which deploys satellite technology to pinpoint and track point source emissions, particularly methane. In 2021 he helped establish Global Methane Hub with over $225 million in philanthropic funds to support methane advocacy and mitigation.
Richard currently lives in San Francisco, California, with his wife and two adult children. His first published book, The Model: 37 years investing in Asian equities, was released in 2021. Richard is also a member of the Board of Directors of The National Audubon Society.
“Richard Lawrence is a true climate hero. For someone with more than a full-time job in finance, he spends a completely unreasonable amount of time, money, passion and creativity fighting for climate solutions. Here he focuses on the vital role Voluntary Carbon Markets need to play; on the dedicated people who drive it forward; and on the need to blend integrity with practical market success.”
—Jeremy Grantham, Co-founder and Chairman, The Grantham Foundation for the Protection of the Environment
“From its opening chapters to its insightful conclusions, Carbon Done Correctly shows how high-quality carbon projects [in the Global South] and the Voluntary Carbon Market can—and must—be a vital part of the world’s solution to climate change.”
—Bola Olusanya, Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, The Nature Conservancy
"The global climate crisis urgently demands billions of dollars to fund decarbonization projects around the world. The Voluntary Carbon Market, if done right, can do just that—and people like Richard and Dee Lawrence have dedicated themselves to make the market achieve its full potential. Carbon Done Correctly is a book all should read.”
—Bill Winters, CEO, Standard Chartered
“To address climate change, we need all the tools at our disposal. The Voluntary Carbon Market is a much misunderstood and powerful tool that we cannot afford to neglect. Too little has been written of note on these issues, and nothing with the level of detail and example you will find here.”
—Ricardo Bayon, Co-author of Voluntary Carbon Markets: An International Business Guide to What They Are and How They Work”; Adjunct Professor of Environmental Studies, Brown University
“Carbon Done Correctly, with informed insight and stories from across the world, shows how high-quality carbon projects in the Global South and the Voluntary Carbon Market, working together, can be a vital part of the world’s solution to climate change.”
—Deborah Gordon, Senior Principal, Climate Intelligence, Rocky Mountain Institute
“Having read this book, I want to meet the people who are building efficient cookstoves in Honduras, the people who are sending satellites into orbit to monitor greenhouse gas emissions, the 85-year-old man who has planted a million mangrove trees in Burma, the corporate executives who are striving to do the right thing for the climate. I want to meet all of them, thank them, and ask, ‘What can I do to help?’”
—Joojin Kim, Founder & Executive Director, Solutions for Our Climate
“As I was turning the pages of Carbon Done Correctly, it struck me that this book could also be made into a great documentary. The book is alive with the stories of remarkable people far-flung across the globe working to help solve our climate crisis.”
—David Halperin, Senior Partner, Orrick
"Many things come to mind, but I most remember two things about this book: 1. The amazing cast of characters and their intertwining stories; 2. That solving climate change is hard work, honorable, absolutely necessary, and possible."
—Bob Simon, Senior VP, Investments, Stifel Nicolaus
"Carbon Done Correctly is both a vigorous defense of the evolving Voluntary Carbon Market's impact and potential as a critical component in our climate change struggle and a heartwarming story of intrepid individuals who through their vision, passion, and persistence demonstrate to all of us that we can make a difference in saving our planet. Bravo to Richard for sharing his adventure, starting in the small Honduran mountain village of Atima with the challenge of building 50 cookstoves to Cool Effect’s leadership in responsible Carbon Credit investments."
—Spencer Purinton, Executive Chairman, RPI-Apex