EIC GHG Programme: The green case with föra
More and more companies are implementing carbon reduction measures, products and innovations, but taking that step to go green can require a lot of work and effort. With the EIC Greenhouse Gas Programme, the EIC wants to further stimulate and support companies to reduce their carbon footprint. For those that still need a gentle nudge in the right direction, we gathered several inspiring EIC companies for you, innovators that are taking the motto "climate action is a business case" to the next level. In this week’s edition, we meet with föra (föra forest technologies), a Spanish company that aims to protect the Earth’s forests by providing data-driven and actionable forest intelligence.
Created in 2013, föra is a technology and innovation company focused on the assessment of forest resources by using remote sensing information and Artificial Intelligence. According to the founders, biomass represents the present and future of a renewable energy scheme in Europe and föra’s technology allows us to evaluate how the forests, through their carbon absorption rates, mitigate the effects of Climate Change.
How is that accomplished? Using Satellite information – mainly from the European Copernicus Satellite Constellation – combined with LiDAR technology (Light Detection and Ranging) has helped them develop precise and updated algorithms to digitalize forests, in order to evaluate how they really are and how they grow. The point? To assess forest resources and some of their ecosystem services. By doing so, biomass can be estimated, no matter the forest: any size, species, age, structure, etc. Therefore, it can be offered as carbon offsetting for carbon footprints of companies and products/services (which, by the way, föra is also able to calculate).
Iñigo Lizarralde, CEO of the company, explains that “in föra, we study the dual relationship between Climate Change and Forests. While forests suffer the consequences of Climate Change, such as droughts, fires, etc., at the same time, forests act as mitigators of Climate Change, absorbing carbon, reducing the effects of floods, or avoiding soil erosion, among other beneficial effects”.
Present in 7 countries and working with over 30 million hectares of forest, föra’s technology is also completely aligned with the EU Green Deal. They address directly one of its goals of preserving and restoring ecosystems and biodiversity, with a special focus on the EU Forest Strategy, putting the forest sector on the centre stage.
Also, part of their portfolio is:
Measuring the carbon uptake, which is one of the best ways to offset GHG emissions.
Calculating the carbon footprint of companies and products/services including offsetting options with forests.
Helping other companies to calculate, reduce and offset their GHG emissions for the development of more sustainable business policies.
As a company committed to forests and sustainability, is föra making efforts in their daily working procedures? The answer is, yes. Iñigo Lizarralde commented that “way before COVID, we established remote working as an alternative chosen regularly by more than half of our staff. We really believe in remote working as a great way of reducing our carbon footprint (by avoiding commuting)”.
About the EIC GHG programme
With the EIC GHG programme, part of the Business Acceleration Services, the EIC offers its beneficiaries the support and expertise needed to assess, track and efficiently reduce their carbon footprint through the use of a dedicated GHG tool, monthly webinars and further support services.
In addition, co-creation activities with corporates, industrial associations, regions in carbon transition and other SMEs are currently ongoing. Applications for the EIC Greenhouse Gas Webinar: Green Electricity and Neste are still open! More information on the EIC GHG programme can be found here.