Today, Verra is proud to announce that we submitted our application to have Verra’s flagship carbon crediting program—the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) Program—assessed against the Core Carbon Principles (CCPs) developed by the Integrity Council for Voluntary Carbon Markets (ICVCM). This submission is an expression of confidence in the future of the transparent, science-backed and consensus-driven VCS Program, and our belief in the critical role of this market-wide effort spearheaded by the ICVCM.
Verra plays a crucial role in enabling private sector investment to flow into tangible and effective climate action. This is especially so in developing countries where the presence of reliable finance can help facilitate a transition to low-emissions economic growth and unlock opportunities for sustainable development. This is the kind of immediate and ambitious climate action that the world needs.
Our journey with the VCS Program began over a decade and a half ago. Since then, we have sought to expand its reach while leveraging experience, science and technology in a spirit of continuous improvement. For us, the ICVCM is the next step on this journey.
We tailored our ICVCM application to reinforce key methodological developments. For this reason—for some project types—we are putting forward only the latest methodology versions for ICVCM assessment. We are also creating a pathway that enables proponents to transition their projects to these latest versions. With this optional pathway, proponents would select an ICVCM-approved Verra methodology and apply it retroactively to past monitoring periods to receive CCP labels. We will soon issue a guidance document with specifics on how to pursue this pathway.
The methodology versions we are not submitting for ICVCM assessment are set out in the table below. With this submission, we aim to reinforce the shift to updated methodologies, including our much-awaited new REDD methodology to be released next week. This new methodology will have a transformative effect on these projects that are so vital to addressing climate change.
That said, credits issued under previous avoided unplanned deforestation methodology versions (see table) will exist as before and remain available for transactions, including for trading and retirement.
Looking ahead, Verra and the VCS Program Advisory Group are working to develop version 5 of the VCS Program, which will enable another step change improvement in program usability, integrity and impact.
All VCS methodologies have been submitted except those in the following table, for the rationale listed:
|Methodology Name and Version||Next Steps|
|VM0004 Methodology for Avoided Planned Land Use Conversion in Peat Swamp Forests, v1.0 to v2.0||To be replaced by the updated VCS tropical peatland methodology in 2024|
|VM0006 Methodology for Carbon Accounting for Mosaic and Landscape-scale REDD Projects, v1.0 to v2.2||To be superseded by the new REDD methodology launching on November 27, 2023|
|VM0007 REDD+ Methodology Framework (REDD+MF), v1.0 to v1.6||To be superseded by the new REDD methodology launching on November 27, 2023|
|VM0009 Methodology for Avoided Ecosystem Conversion, v1.0 to v3.0||To be superseded by the new REDD methodology launching on November 27, 2023|
|VM0010 Methodology for Improved Forest Management: Conversion from Logged to Protected Forest, v1.0 to v1.3||Currently under revision. Expected to be submitted to the ICVCM in Q3 2024|
|VM0015 Methodology for Avoided Unplanned Deforestation, v1.0 to v1.1||To be superseded by the new REDD methodology launching on November 27, 2023|
|VM0037 Methodology for Implementation of REDD+ Activities in Landscapes Affected by Mosaic Deforestation and Degradation, v1.0||To be superseded by the new REDD methodology launching on November 27, 2023|
|VMR0006 Energy Efficiency and Fuel Switch Measures in Thermal Applications, v1.0 to v1.1||Replaced in July 2023 with VMR0006 v1.2.
A new M0174 Methodology for Improved Thermal Energy Generation Units is currently under development, to be released for consultation in Q4 2023. This new methodology will replace VMR0006, v1.2. Projects using VMR0006, v1.2 may update to the new methodology once it is approved.
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Verra is a global leader helping to tackle the world’s most intractable environmental and social challenges. As a mission-driven nonprofit organization, Verra is committed to helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve livelihoods and protect natural resources by working with the private and public sectors. We support climate action and sustainable development with standards programs that credibly, transparently and robustly assess environmental and social impacts and enable funding for sustaining and scaling up projects that verifiably deliver these benefits.