Forest Carbon Standards Training Development Consultant, The Rainforest Alliance

Forest Carbon Standards Training Development Consultant

Duration: One month; no guaranteed minimum work
Date prepared: November 10, 2010
Location: Any; Bali, Indonesia preferred

The Rainforest Alliance (RA) is an international nonprofit organization that works to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices, business practices and consumer behavior. Based in New York City, with offices throughout the United States and worldwide, the Rainforest Alliance works with people whose livelihoods depend on the land, helping them transform the way they grow food, harvest wood and host travelers.

The Climate, Community & Biodiversity Alliance (CCBA) is a partnership of international NGOs seeking to foster the development of forest protection and restoration activities around the world that deliver significant social and environmental benefits. With this goal in mind, the CCBA has developed voluntary standards to help design and identify land management projects that simultaneously minimize climate change, support sustainable development and conserve biodiversity.

The CCB Standards are now widely used by project developers and demanded by buyers in the forest carbon market. As of September 2010, 49 projects have been validated or are undergoing audit and approximately 100 other projects around the world are being designed to meet the Standards. These projects include reforestation, restoration, avoided deforestation and degradation, and agroforestry activities.

RA is a member of the CCBA, and its SmartWood auditing program offers CCB Standards validation and verification services.


The consultant should develop an in-depth training in the application of the CCB Standards for use primarily in training auditors to the Standards, but also in educating project proponents and technical assistance providers about the expectations of the Standards. The training should be designed to be given over three complete days. The training will be co-branded by the CCBA, as the standards organization, and the Rainforest Alliance, as the primary contributor of inputs and guidance in training development.

Validation and/or verification to the CCB Standards are rapidly growing services for many carbon project auditing firms. Auditors are required to have a high level of understanding of the depth and breadth of the standard relevant to the scale and impact that a project might have; project proponents can also benefit from clear guidance about what auditors will expect from them in certain areas of the validation/verification process. Training is required in order to deepen auditors’ and developers’ understanding of the CCB Standards criteria and requirements of carbon, targeted and in-depth.

The Rainforest Alliance’s extensive experience in training forestry professionals in social, environmental and carbon auditing shows that documents such as slides and printed guides are useful training tools but that real examples, exercises and tests must be part of any training that aims to cement learning and understanding. The delivery method also needs to be carefully considered: although face-to-face seminars are likely the best learning environments, the costs and environmental impact of bringing participants together in person must be considered. Therefore, as well as material that can be delivered in person, there is a demand for (live or recorded) web-based learning opportunities.

Training Audience

The consultant should develop a training that is aimed for use with general audiences (NGOs, governments, other project proponents and project developers), but which includes auditor-focused exercises. The auditor-focused exercises associated with each section of the training can be useful for project proponents (for example, developers as well as auditors can learn from the definition of what makes a particular practice sufficient to pass a certain criteria), but could be left out if a particular audience would find no benefit in them.


Five training modules and an evaluation should be developed as part of this consultancy. A “training module” should be understood to mean a set of guidance documents, PowerPoint presentations, exercises and tests that can be delivered in person or for remote learning. To support the development of this CCB Standards training, the consultant will have access to validation/verification audit reports produced by the RA and other CCB Standards auditors, RA procedural documents, RA training materials, time with RA staff or auditors as appropriate, CCBA and CCB Standards policies and guidance and time with CCBA staff as appropriate.

Bracketed number shows the estimated total effort required for each of the modules.

  • Module 1 – CCB Standards theory and introduction (including general criteria) (20 percent)
  • Module 2 – CCB Standards climate criteria (20 percent)
  • Module 3 – CCB Standards community criteria (20 percent)
  • Module 4 – CCB Standards biodiversity criteria (20 percent)
  • Module 5 – Rules for use of the CCB Standards (20 percent)
  • Additional: Means to evaluate the participants after they have completed the course
  • Means to provide feedback to the trainers about the course


  • Bachelor’s degree required; Master’s degree in environmental science, forestry, biometrics, ecology or comparable work experience preferred;
  • Familiarity with the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standards required; audit experience preferred;
  • Experience with a variety of methods for social and biodiversity impact assessment required;
  • Strong understanding of carbon modeling, measurement, and/or carbon markets;
  • Strong computer skills (Microsoft Excel, Word, Outlook and PowerPoint);
  • Excellent writing, editing and verbal communication skills;
  • Strong organizational skills to manage multiple priorities in a time sensitive manner;
  • Excellent interpersonal and teamwork skills;
  • Knowledge of, and commitment to, environmental issues and sustainability practices; and
  • Experience in an international conservation organization or auditing firm preferred.


Commensurate with experience.

To Apply

Please send a proposal stating availability and describing the products that the consultant would create – those that you envision will lead to the desired outcome: well-trained forest carbon professionals. Please include a draft agenda indicating how topics would be presented and organized, how long the envisioned sessions would take and how different teaching methods (Power Point presentations, videos, exercises, role play, discussions, tests, field work, etc.) would be utilized. The proposal should also include the consultant’s relevant experience and rate for the project, and should be directed to

The Rainforest Alliance is an equal opportunity employer.