The commentary urges countries to shift the world firmly onto a pathway to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, including by the adoption of international rules for country-to-country cooperation under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, to avert irreversible climate catastrophe.
As government actions ramp up, voluntary markets can bridge the gap to drive urgently needed finance to projects that reduce and remove emissions now. In particular, these markets enable developing countries to accelerate their mitigation ambition, to be reflected in increasingly progressive future rounds of NDCs.
To address concerns that companies may use voluntary markets to escape bringing their own emissions down in line with achieving net zero emissions, voluntary credits should only be used to compensate for emissions that, at this point, cannot be avoided or reduced. Used in this way, voluntary markets can maximize a company’s mitigation potential.
Verra recognizes that some host countries may wish to incorporate voluntary market transactions into the accounting adjustments they make under Article 6. However, Verra opposes requiring this of all countries that host projects, as this is simply not warranted for many countries and would lock in unequal treatment of developing countries.
Climate action facilitated by voluntary markets is one of many approaches to tackling the climate crisis — not the only one — but one that fills a hazardous gap in global climate action and performs a catalytic role in nurturing greater ambition.
For more information, please contact:
Anne Thiel, Senior Manager, Communications: +1 202 470 5664; email@example.com.
Verra is a nonprofit organization that runs the world’s largest carbon crediting program, the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) Program. Verra is committed to help 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, tools, and 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.