All posts by Admin


The High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA) is hiring to fill one position within the HCSA Secretariat. Please find the following vacancies:

1HCSA Communications Manager to lead the development and execution of a communications strategy to successfully increase the awareness and uptake of the HCSA Toolkit(s), HCSA membership and overall support for the initiative.

For more information, please download the Job Description:
HCSA Communications Manager Position
2HCSA Malaysia Office & HR Manager will be responsible as the Office & HR Manager of HCSA SG and the job scope is likely to be
evolving on an ongoing basis, but will include some or more of the following tasks:

a) Human Resource Management
b) Office and Facilities Administrative Management
c) Microsoft Office and other software management
d) HCSA Legal Entity Management

For more information, please download the Job Description:
HCSA Malaysia Office & HR Manager Position

If you have the relevant experience and are interested in the positions above, please send in your CV and cover letter to the HCSA Secretariat at by 10th November 2021 for HCSA Communications Manager and 15th November 2021 for HCSA Malaysia Office & HR Manager. Thank you.

HCSA and AFi’s Partnership Plan is Launched

24th August 2021 – Today the High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA) [1] and the Accountability Framework initiative (AFi) [2] launched their Partnership Plan [3] to advance their shared objectives related to natural forests and ecosystem protection, land rights, climate change and biodiversity loss mitigation within ethical supply chains.  

The HCS Approach and AFi are integral to supporting robust no-deforestation and conservation commitments for companies producing, sourcing, or investing in forest-risk commodity supply chains. The collaboration aims to expand global commitments and their effective implementation through the increased uptake of the HCS Approach and the AFi’s Core Principles and Guidance.  To achieve their shared objectives, the partnership between the HCSA and AFi will focus on: 

  • Disseminating materials detailing how The HCSA and the Accountability Framework are aligned and complementary, and how both can be used to support defining forests and achieving no-deforestation and conservation efforts, respect land rights, improve livelihoods, and ethical supply chains. 
  • Promoting uptake of the HSA and the Accountability Framework when engaging companies and other actors to implement efforts to address and transform forest-risk commodity supply chains. 
  • Engaging in each other’s initiatives to exchange learnings, expertise, and identify opportunities to strengthen/expand areas of alignment, guidance, and supporting tools.  

HCSA and AFi are keen to work with their overlapping organisational members, other interested organisations, and stakeholders to make the partnership plan a success. 



The High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA) is a  methodology that distinguishes forest areas for protection from degraded lands with low carbon and biodiversity values that may be developed, whilst ensuring that the rights and livelihoods of communities and workers are respected. The HCSA methodology can be used for integrated land use planning in any country and commodity grown in tropical moist forest landscapes and the HCSA is adapting its methodology for application by independent smallholders and will soon have an open-access framework technical procedure for producing high-quality indicative HCSA-HCV maps at a landscape level. 


The Accountability Framework initiative (AFi) is a global coalition of leading environmental and human rights organizations working together to accelerate progress and improve accountability of company commitments to protect forests and safeguard human rights in agriculture and forestry supply chains. In June 2019, the coalition launched the Accountability Framework, a set of common principles, definitions, and guidance to support companies in setting ethical supply chain goals, taking action on them, and reporting on progress.   

[3] In June 2021, HCSA joined the AFi coalition as a Supporting Partner and AFi was recognised as a partner of the HCSA Steering Group to support the aims of the Partnership Plan. 

i The HCSA methodology can be used for integrated land use planning in any country and commodity grown in tropical moist forest landscapes while the AFi guidance is applicable to natural forests and ecosystem types. 

Publicly available indicative High Carbon Stock Forest maps for Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines

Mapping High Carbon Stock (HCS) forests is a critical step towards protecting them from deforestation. High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA) member Barry Callebaut (BC) teamed up with the EcoVision Lab at ETH Zurich University to produce large-scale indicative HCS forest maps for Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Utilising HCSA’s classification for vegetation stratification, over the past four years the ETH team combined new spaceborne LIDAR, satellite imagery, and calibrated regional carbon biomass data to produce large-scale indicative HCS maps which are highly automated and objective.

These maps represent a good first step towards automating large-scale indicative HCS forest maps covering large tropical forest regions.  Nevertheless, it is important to locally calibrate the maps to validate and/or improve the accuracy of the maps before using them for integrated conservation land use planning, management, and monitoring.  Additionally, the large-scale maps may be used to complement, but not substitute, HCS forest mapping as required for HCSA assessments as per HCSA Toolkit requirements. 

The HCSA will continue to work with HCSA members and partners, including BC and ETH, to regularly update large-scale indicative HCS maps and improve their accuracy. The HCSA will support making the refined maps publicly available for use by land managers implementing the HCS Approach, in particular, smallholder farmers and small to medium enterprise third-party suppliers to HCSA members.

For access to the pre-print ‘High carbon stock mapping at large scale with optical satellite imagery and spaceborne LIDAR’ paper published ETH Zurich and University of Zurich and for access to the indicative HCS maps for Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines visit this link.


HCSA is pleased to announce the High Carbon Stock Approach’s 2020 annual report on progress, highlights, and key developments made against the HCSA Global Strategic Business Plan (GSBP) and our Theory of Change (ToC) has been published. Thank you to the HCSA Steering Group members, partners, donors, and stakeholders for being adaptative to the challenging pandemic situation and providing support and valuable contributions in a safe and productive manner towards HCSA’s continued successes, impacts and learnings.

HCSA key highlights and developments from 2020 include:

  • The HCSA Foundation (ANBI – a Public Benefit Organisation) and the HCS Approach Sdn. Bhd which hosts HCSA’s first physical office, were established in the Netherlands and Malaysia, respectively.
  • The revised HCSA’s 14 Social Requirements (SRs) and Implementation Guide were approved which provide best practices for upholding human rights and ensuring the rights and livelihoods of local peoples are respected whilst implementing No Deforestation policies.
  • Trials of the “A Simplified HCS-HCV Approach for Smallholders” commenced in West Kalimantan, Indonesia led by SPKS – a HCSA member and smallholder/farmer support organisation based in Indonesia.
  • The “HCSA’s Guidance: Integrated Conservation Land Use Plan Development and Implementation Development and Implementation” was approved as interim guidance for trialling in 2021.  It incorporates management and monitoring guidance for an ICLUP which is the final output from the application of the HCSA Approach.
  • The HCSA begun developing a Framework methodology for landscape-level indicative HCS forest mapping that will be available for use in identified priority landscapes in 2021.
  • The HCSA Grievance Mechanism based on UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) effectiveness criteria for rights-based grievance mechanisms was developed in 2020 and launched in January 2021.
  • Phase I of the HCSA Membership Requirements Review (MRR) was concluded in November.  The HCSA Membership Committee  developed  a suite of indicators and means of verification for evaluating compliance to the existing HCSA Membership Eligibility and Code of Conduct requirements outlined in HCSA Steering Group Membership Requirements and Application Form.
  • HCSA signed a five-year Memorandum of Understanding with HCV Network (HCVN) to strengthen the collaboration to conserve forests and uphold community rights in tropical forests. 
  • The GPNSR policy framework ‘For Sustainable Natural Rubber Production and Sourcing’ references HCSA as key tool for implementing its no deforestation requirement.
  • The HCSA Secretariat published Advice Notes which respond to technical queries that arise from the implementation of the HCSA methodology and the evaluation of HCV-HCSA and HCSA assessment reports.