Ecosystem Certification Organisation (ECO) is a not-for-profit organisation based in the UK. It serves as the administration body of the Natural Forest Standard (NFS).


The NFS has been developed for natural forestry projects within the voluntary carbon market. It provides an efficient and effective mechanism for crediting the carbon and ecosystem benefits resulting from the avoided deforestation and degradation of large scale natural forest projects.

With an increasing focus on natural climate solutions for the preservation of the planet in recent times, the biodiversity and ecosystem benefits that are present within the world’s natural forests is evermore important. The ECO NFS provides a framework for protecting both the forests and the biodiversity that exists within them through the quantification and certification of both carbon and biodiversity values, whilst also providing livelihood benefits to the local communities.

The ECO NFS has been developed due to a clear need for a standard that includes both the quantification of carbon benefits from avoided deforestation and degradation of forests, together with biodiversity and social benefits into one all-encompassing Standard.

ECO Governance Board

The Natural Forest Standard operates under the administration of ECO, with a governance board which will include appropriate representation of experts in forest conservation, ecosystem services and social issues whilst also representing the needs of the stakeholders and the efficient operation of the Standard. The ECO NFS secretariat, overseen by the Board carries out the operational activities in relation to the administration of the main functions of the Standard.


ECO aims to develop a suite of standard frameworks, each focused on a specific project type, using efficient good practice approaches and designed to meet the needs of users and stakeholders. 

Our approach is to bring standards into operation as efficiently as possible, and to ensure a practical yet robust process for end users. We are aware that many certification processes involve high levels of bureaucracy and we seek to provide a streamlined process while maintaining high scientific standards and appropriate levels of consultation and participation at each stage.

In addition to developing standards and methods hosted by ECO, we may participate in or develop standards that are transferred to other certification organisations.