January 25, solutions provider for carbon markets Sylvera announced that she had successfully completed a Series A Funding Round, with a total investment of $32 million. The round was led by Index Ventures, a European venture capital firm with over $4 billion in assets under management, and also included Insight Partners, Salesforce Ventures and Local Globe. Founded in 2020, Sylvera is a growing start-up with over 80 employees. The last funding round ended less than a year after the $7.8 million seed round in May 2021. The COP 26 agreement on carbon credit accounting rules has facilitated the investment decisions of carbon market companies.
Sylvera’s solution allows users to track and monitor the quality of their carbon credits related to the nature-based projects from which they originate. The data underlying Sylvera’s model is generated using globally sourced satellite imagery from US, European and Japanese space agencies. Powerful machine learning techniques can identify changes that have occurred on the ground at project sites, such as wildfires and illegal logging. The information can then be analyzed and assessed against the project’s initial carbon credit accounting process to provide validation of project performance. Sylvera will then provide a grade for the quality of the project between AAA-D. The investment is intended to help Sylvera grow in line with the expected growth of the overlapping Article 6 and voluntary carbon markets. Based on disclosed trading, the voluntary carbon market exceeded $1 billion in transactions in 2021. By 2030, the value of transactions in the voluntary carbon market is expected to reach at least $7 billion and potentially $14 billion of dollars. Sylvera sells carbon credit project data to carbon offset buyers, carbon traders and project developers.
Verdantix believes satellite analysis will have three impacts on the carbon market. First, higher quality and more granular data from imagery will expose underperforming projects. This is bad news for sustainability leaders who have bought credits from underperforming projects. Project liability issues can prove to be a costly thorn in the side of project developers. Second, improved data could reduce the responsibilities of current carbon project verifiers like BSI and Bureau Veritas, who typically verify project performance once every three years, which offers weaker guarantees of quality than daily verification. or weekly via satellite. Third, satellite analysis will improve the integrity of new nature-based offset projects because frequent verification is built into the methodologies. If companies like Sylvera can demonstrate the value of their technology, satellite analytics could be enshrined in the Article 6 project methodology rules that are to be finalized in COP 27 in Egypt.