Welcome to Issue #3 of Verra’s Sustainable Development Download with updates on Verra’s Sustainable Development Verified Impact Standard (SD VISta), the world’s most advanced standard for projects demonstrating sustainable development impacts.

Verra Registers First Standalone SD VISta Project

Verra has registered the first standalone project with its SD VISta Program.

The Human Forest Mobility Project, based in London, United Kingdom, enables users to hire free electric bikes, thereby reducing carbon-intensive travel.

The project contributes to six SDGs.

Since SD VISta was established in 2019, the standard has primarily been used to label carbon credits as originating from projects that help support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Human Forest Mobility Project is the first standalone project registered in SD VISta and indicates a growing appetite for quantifying the non-carbon benefits of environmental projects.

To learn more, read our announcement “Verra Registers First Standalone SD VISta Project”.

SD VISta at a Glance

SD VISta Nature Framework

As part of Verra’s SD VISta Program, the Nature Framework Development Group (NFDG) is developing a nature framework to drive investment to high-quality biodiversity conservation and restoration activities.

Many high-quality conservation efforts remain inadequately funded, and many of the services they provide beyond carbon sequestration, such as species conservation, water purification, soil health, or efforts to preserve marine biodiversity, have no monetization pathway at all. Equally, companies and other market participants lack structured, auditable channels to invest in nature. A globally scalable nature framework can address both challenges, driving finance to projects that implement conservation and restoration activities, while providing companies with a way to verifiably improve their nature footprint.

Connect with Verra at the CBD COP

Verra has a strong presence at the Convention on Biological Diversity – COP15 in Montreal, Canada where world governments are convening to agree a new set of goals for biodiversity, nature conservation, and restoration over the next decade.

Sinclair Vincent, Director, Sustainable Development Innovation, is on three panels. Robin Rix, Chief Legal, Policy, and Markets Officer, Lorena Arredondo Tagle, Manager, Sustainable Development Innovation, and Vanessa Flores, Senior Program Officer, Sustainable Development Policy and Markets, are also attending.

Read our announcement “Connect with Verra at the CBD COP” to learn more.

To meet with Verra staff in Montreal, contact events@verra.org and indicate your availability.

Case Study: Tuik Ruch Lew Improved Cookstove Project

The Tuik Ruch Lew (TRL) project sustainably provides, installs, and maintains energy-efficient cookstoves in the Lake Atitlán Basin, Guatemala. The project enables community access to sustainable energy technology by providing, installing, and maintaining energy-efficient cookstoves at a subsidized rate, reducing demand for wood fuel and slowing local deforestation.

The SD VISta certification enables the project to capture, verify, and measure all of its sustainable development benefits.

Case Study: Tuik Ruch Lew Improved Cookstoves Project

Now that our project is certified with SD VISta, we have the power to independently verify all the different sustainable development benefits of our project, to a level of detail we couldn’t otherwise achieve. This accuracy is so important for all those who put their trust in our work – from our funding partners, to the communities we support on the ground.

Candis E. Krummel, Co-Founder, Tuik Ruch Lew

A Look Ahead

On December 15, Komal Sinha, Director, Plastics and Sustainable Development Policy and Markets, will join a webinar, hosted by the Wuppertal Institute, to discuss the potential and risks of plastic crediting as well as future scenarios of the plastic credits market.

A ringed kingfisher (Ceryle torquatus) on the banks of the Chaihuin River in the Valdivian Coastal Reserve project. Photo by Nick Hall.

In January, please look out for our commentary on key takeaways from CBD COP 15! And in case you missed it, please see our recent commentary, 5 Reasons for Using Plastic Crediting in the Global Plastic Treaty, following our attendance at this month’s meeting of the intergovernmental negotiation committee to develop a Global Plastic Treaty, which took place in Uruguay from 28 November to 2 December 2022 (INC-1).

If you’d like to invite a Verra Sustainable Development team member to speak at your event, please contact events@verra.org.