Our objective is to achieve environmental improvements in the most effective manner possible, by providing an online trading platform for buyers and sellers of environmental measures.
Each year over £13bn is spent in catchments in England and Wales, with typically over 50 bodies in a single catchment controlling this spend. Much of this is allocated inefficiently with little dialogue between investors or time spent identifying the most cost effective combination of these measures.
Combined with this inefficiency is the consideration that catchment solutions are given over asset solutions; although environmental measures tend to cost significantly less than asset solutions they are rarely given full consideration or implemented. Not only does this result in unnecessary spending, but asset solutions provide none of the additional environmental benefits that come with catchment measures.
EnTrade is a tool that can make this allocation of funding more efficient, by providing an online platform to allow buyers and sellers to come together to identify the most cost effective combination of measures to affect a specified environmental outcome.
EnTrade allows buyers of environmental offsets to create an online auction for particular measures. The platform quickly estimates the resulting savings for measures that sellers (typically farmers and landowners) choose to bid for. This then allows the seller to enter their cost and see the resulting pound per unit of saving cost on which their bid will be judged.
Sellers can adjust their bid at any point throughout the auction, and once closed the buyer of the offsets can calculate the most cost effective combination of bids to meet their given target.
The EnTrade concept was trialled with Wessex Water who have taken an active role in catchment management over the past 10 years.
In 2015 catchment management in Wessex Water entered a new era after they successfully negotiated with the EA, Natural England and Ofwat to offset 40 tonnes of nitrogen from entering Poole Harbour by working with farmers in the catchment rather than build an asset at Dorchester sewage works.
The Wessex Water catchment team used EnTrade to invite farmers to bid for funding to grow cover crops over winter to reduce the nitrogen leaching into the water course. They ran their first auction in June 2016 advertising a 20 tonne target on the platform and received:
The auction also saved Wessex Water 30% on their nitrogen costs compared to previous methods of interacting with farmers.
Two further auctions were run in February 2017 comprising:
If you’d like more information on the EnTrade platform or are interested in running your own auction
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