Eligibility of VCUs for Use in CORSIA

Background

In March of 2019, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) published a set of emissions unit criteria by which emissions units would qualify for use in the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA). In March of 2020, the ICAO Council voted to accept Verified Carbon Units (VCUs) issued to certain project types that meet a set of eligibility criteria. The purpose of the guidance posted here is to clearly identify which VCUs are eligible for use in CORSIA and to highlight how such eligible VCUs will be identified on the Verra Registry.

Note that this page will be updated from time-to-time as ICAO makes further decisions in respect of CORSIA emissions unit eligibility.

VCU Eligibility Criteria

VCUs that meet each of the following conditions are eligible for use in CORSIA for the 2021-2023 pilot phase:

CORSIA VCU Label

Where VCUs are demonstrated to have met each of the eligibility criteria set out in VCU Eligibility Criteria section (above), a “CORSIA label” will be applied to such VCUs and displayed on the Verra Registry to indicate eligibility for use in CORSIA. Verra believes taking this labelling approach is more sensible than creating an entirely new unit type, since VCUs eligible for CORSIA may also be used for other purposes besides CORSIA.

The CORSIA label will appear in the Verra Registry, and will be searchable,[4] in a similar fashion to other credit-level  additional certifications, such as VCU labels for CCB Program certification (i.e., the label will appear on the VCUs as opposed to at the project-level). Verra is currently in the process of developing this CORSIA VCU label within the Verra Registry platform.

 


[1] Note that CORSIA requires projects to take appropriate steps to ensure that post-2020 emission reductions are not double counted in the context of reporting under the Paris Agreement. However, this criterion is not currently relevant due to this vintage eligibility restriction (i.e., for the time being, no post-2020 emission reductions will be used during the pilot phase). Verra is in the process of developing requirements that would instruct projects on the steps necessary to comply with this criterion for post-2020 emission reductions in anticipation of post-2020 emission reductions becoming eligible for future compliance cycles. This page will be updated in due course to reflect those requirements, when relevant.

[2] Verra anticipates re-submitting additional AFOLU activities and introducing new rules and procedures that could expand the scope of project activities recognized under CORSIA, particularly for standalone AFOLU projects. Verra intends to work closely with ICAO to determine optimal pathways for securing approval for such activities.

[3] Verra is in the process of updating the JNR Requirements to allow a minimum JNR program crediting period of 20 years.

[4] Verra envisions that there will be a need to further designate CORSIA-eligible VCUs based on differing eligibility criteria across future compliance cycles. Accordingly, the label may appear as “CORSIA-1” (as in, CORSIA compliance cycle 1), “CORSIA-2”, and so on.

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