Ecosystem Marketplace to Launch Latest State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets Report on June 2

Ecosystem Marketplace and Bloomberg will be releasing the 2011 State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets report in Barcelona on Thursday, June 2. This year’s launch events will be hosted by Forest Carbon Group at CARBON EXPO 2011 – an event we expect will attract players from all corners of the voluntary carbon markets.

NOTE: This article has been reprinted from Ecosystem Marketplace’s Voluntary Carbon newsletter. You can receive this summary of global news and views from the world of voluntary carbon automatically in your inbox by clicking here.

27 May 2011 |   Ecosystem Marketplace invites you to take part as we launch our findings at an event celebrating the release of the 2011 State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets report! This year’s launch events will be hosted by Forest Carbon Group at CARBON EXPO 2011 in Barcelona – an event we expect will attract players from all corners of the voluntary carbon markets.

Learn first-hand the results of our research that takes a look back at 2010 market activity – and to the future with projections for voluntary carbon – presented by a panel of report authors and reputable voluntary carbon market experts.
Having benchmarked yet another year in the voluntary carbon markets, we hope you will be able to join Ecosystem Marketplace and Bloomberg New Energy Finance for a first look at our findings. If you will not be attending CARBON EXPO 2011, the full report will be available for download HERE on or after our launch events – stay tuned!

Event 1: Report Presentation and Panel Discussion

Thursday, June 2, 2011; 14:00-15:00
Hall 2, Room D; Fira de Barcelona Montjuí¯c Venue
Panelists From:
Ecosystem Marketplace
Bloomberg New Energy Finance
Forest Carbon Group
Carbon Trade Exchange

Event 2: Comments, Followed by Cocktails

Thursday, June 2, 2011; 16:30+
Hall 5 (just inside main entrance); Fira de Barcelona Montjuí¯c Venue
Join report authors and other market experts for a quick high-level summary of report findings, followed by cocktails! Meet the authors, who will be available for questions and comments following the event.

Seats and space are limited so please RSVP to let us know if you will be attending!
– The Editors

For comments or questions, please email: [email protected]

V-Carbon News

Voluntary Carbon

Q’s and A’s about QAS

The UK Quality Assurance Scheme for Carbon Offsetting (QAS) has announced that it is closing its doors at the end of the month to make room for the voluntary carbon market. In a letter to its Advisory Board – which includes the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance (ICROA) – the Head of the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (DECC) Low Carbon Economy Unit stated “The carbon market has moved on substantially since the introduction of the QAS and we now believe it is for the market to set best practice for carbon offsetting.” ICROA agrees that the evolution of voluntary market standards and its own code of best practice have effectively fulfilled the goals of the QAS – leaving it up to industry experts and the market to take the lead.

Read the press release
Read more from BusinessGreen
Read more from Low Carbon Economy

Proparco pro-partners with CDC

CDC Climat and French development agency Proparco have teamed up in an investment partnership that will see millions of dollars flow to emissions reductions projects in sub-Saharan Africa. Proparco – the private sector arm of the Agence Francaise de Developpement – has awarded CDC Climat’s carbon asset management division two mandates totaling US$42.6 million to acquire carbon credits equivalent to at least 3.3 MtCO2e. “This partnership brings together the best skill-set for making carbon investments in clean development projects across Africa and the Mediterranean region that are of a very high social, environmental as well as financial quality,” said Pierre Ducret, CDC Climat’s Chief Executive. As part of the deal, Proparco will also acquire a 25 percent share in the equity capital of CDC Climat.

Read the Reuters article

Envirotrading VERs for CERs

Envirotrade Carbon Ltd. sees the future in forests – Africa’s carbon future anyway – which its believes depends on the inclusion of its forests in a regulatory regime. In the mean time, Envirotrade is seeing REDD with its investment of US$2.8 million in an avoided deforestation project in Mozambique’s Quirimbas National Park that will see 125,000 ha of coastal forest and mangroves protected. The project will be developed according to the VCS and is expected to sequester up to 10 million tCO2e over its 20 year lifetime. The Sofala Community Carbon Project has already generated 1.2 million tons of carbon credits, of which one fifth have been sold to companies like Arla Foods and the Creative Artists Foundation, one of Hollywood’s top talent agencies.

Read the Bloomberg article

Go big or go home

That’s essentially what Jonathan Shopley, managing director of The CarbonNeutral Company, told delegates at Environmental Finance’s Forestry, Biomass & Sustainability 2011 conference earlier this month. According to Shopley, the voluntary carbon markets have been too caught up with charismatic carbon projects and are failing to focus on what really matters: scale. The voluntary market is “trapped in the space of saving the Amazon, saving the rainforest and solving world hunger,” he said. “The smart followers want scale, price, low risk and an opportunity to invest to make an impact on climate change.” Despite praising the Gold Standard, Shopley maintained that the market needs to make progress in “figuring out how to work with policy makers, governments, and parts of the private sector” in order to make an impact.

Read the Environmental Finance article

Going once… going twice…

SOLD to the undisclosed buyer! On June 15th, Climex is scheduled to hold an auction for a buyer seeking 170,000 VCS or Gold Standard VERs. “We are delighted to host this auction considering the volume, criteria and realistic price the buyer is willing to pay. The buyer has chosen for an auction process because it offers both the buyer and the seller(s) a fair and transparent process to transact less commoditized and less liquid products like issued VERs”, says Jeroen van de Kletersteeg, Managing Director of Climex. The open order book descending clock auction will start at the buyer’s maximum price of €3.75, with the seller with the lowest offer to be considered the winner. Sellers wishing to participate must disclose their project(s) to Climex prior to May 27th.

Read the press release

Carbon carismí¡tico

South Pole’s Asorpar reforestation project in Colombia has become the first in South America to generate Verified Carbon Units (VCUs) under the VCS. Located in the provinces of Antioquia and Arauca – in an area previously devastated by illegal gold prospecting and coca plantations – the project was recently issued its first 128,900 VCUs and is expected to generate up to €1 million for the project owner in 2011. “The success of the project sends out a clear signal to skeptics that, with the right approach, the fusion of carbon trading and reforestation can be a strong driver for climate change mitigation and biodiversity protection,” said Yougha von Laer, a project manager at South Pole.

Read the press release

Forging the Appalachian carbon trail

Earthcolor Inc. has joined the rapidly branching network of organizations supporting the Appalachian Carbon Partnership’s (ACP) offset investments. There are currently 47 landowners with over 28,600 acres of forestland in Kentucky and Virginia enrolled in the program – and many more on the way. According to Program Manager Scott Shouse, “The money from the offsets goes directly to family forest owners who have made long-term commitments to practice sustainable forest management, which will benefit families and forests for generations to come.” All ACP offsets are verified to the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX) Forestry Carbon Sequestration Project Protocol for Sustainable Managed Forests.

Read the press release

That’s the ticket!

Commuters in the Australian City of Perth can feel a little better about paying exorbitant parking fees knowing that their money is now being used to plant thousands of trees – and generate carbon offsets. Under an innovative program, the City plans to offset its carbon emissions by using car park revenue to fund the planting of 85,000 trees at Koorda, northeast of Perth. “It might lessen the pain a little bit by knowing some good is coming out of their parking fees,” said Mayor Lisa Scaffidi. “When the trees reach full maturity it is calculated that they will entrap 15,600 tonnes of CO2 gasses each year.”

Read the ABC News article

All about AFOLU

That seems to be the ongoing theme anyway – with the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) currently seeking input on yet more agriculture, forestry and other land use (AFOLU) methodologies being assessed under its methodology approval process. Baseline and Monitoring Methodology for Avoiding Planned Deforestation of Undrained Peat Swamp Forests and Calculating Emission Reductions in Rice Management Systems – both developed by Terra Global Capital – have been posted on the VCS website for a 30-day public consultation period. Comments on the methodologies are invited and should be emailed to [email protected] by June 10th.

Read more from the VCS

Have your say on PoA


Calling all market stakeholders – the Gold Standard has issued a public call for inputs on its Programme of Activities (PoA) guidance, expected to be made available by the end of August. It is hoped that this preliminary public consultation will ensure that topics of importance for market actors are considered and addressed – including liability, regional vs. multi country PoAs, PoA vs. activity level additionality and other necessary rule clarifications. Project Proponents, Designated Operational Entities, coordinating and managing entities etc. are encouraged to provide written feedback to [email protected] by June 15th.



Read more from the Gold Standard

Reduce & Retire: The Latest on Carbon Neutral

My little China Green, says…

… plant a tree! Earlier this month the China Green Carbon Foundation (CGCF) unveiled its first “Industrial Enterprise Afforested Carbon Offset Forest,” located in Fujian Province. Donated by Fujian Jianfeng Packaging Supply Co., the forest will – over the course of 10 years – absorb the 5,081 tCO2e emitted by the company during 2010. The CGCF is a national non-profit foundation aimed at combating climate change by increasing carbon sinks, and is built on a quadruple platform of “store carbon credit, practice social responsibility by the enterprises, raise farmers’ income and improve ecological environment.”

Read more from the CGCF

Climate North America

ARB hits a speed bump

A California judge’s decision to stop the Air Resources Board (ARB) from moving ahead with the state’s planned cap and trade program until it reviews alternative policies may have put the brakes on the rule making process – but probably not for long, says Bloomberg New Energy Finance. According to Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith, the ARB violated the “informational requirements” of the California Environmental Quality Act by making rules “without first responding to comments, completing the environmental review process, and approving” the program. Although a new analysis will now have to be completed, BNEF Analyst Tom Marcello predicts it will only take “a couple of months.”

Read more from Bloomberg
Read more from Reuters
Read more from BusinessGreen

RGGI reigns triumphant

It turns out that jobs, savings and emissions reductions do still mean something these days – at least in some states. Despite efforts by lawmakers and lobbyists to unravel RGGI, the states of New Hampshire, Delaware and Maine have all recently reaffirmed their participation in the regional carbon trading scheme. “The tide has definitely turned against these ideas of pulling out of RGGI,” Seth Kaplan, vice president of policy and climate advocacy for the Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), told SolveClimate News. But RGGI’s not of the woods yet – lawmakers in the state of New Jersey, which emits nearly as much as the other three states combined, are still pushing to repeal the program.

Read more from Bloomberg
Read more from Forbes
Read more from Reuters

Fake plastic trees

… okay, that might be a stretch – but California carbon market stakeholders are nonetheless concerned about the potential for “fake” offsets under the state’s planned cap-and-trade program. In a May 2nd letter to the ARB, the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA) and four other lobbying groups insisted the program “cannot work” if buyer liability rules aren’t changed. Although the groups acknowledged that the risk of the ARB issuing offset credits tied to fake pollution cuts it small, if buyers have to replace phony offsets themselves they’re likely to “avoid buying offset credits altogether.” Their solution? To withhold 1.5 percent of the credits in a buffer account that could be used to replace “flawed” credits.

Read the Bloomberg article

Kyoto & Beyond

A CER-tain boost for adaptation

On May 18 the World Bank auctioned 200,000 certified emission reductions (CERs) on behalf of the Adaptation Fund at a price of €12.52 per ton. The auction – held on the BlueNext exchange – generated strong interest and was 6.8 times oversubscribed. Doris Herrera-Pol, Director and Global Head of Capital Markets at the World Bank, said, “this transaction marks an important step in the CER monetization strategy for the Adaptation Fund which we began to implement in 2009. The success of this auction has broadened the gamut of tested and proven approaches for conducting CER sales for the Fund, from over-the-counter and exchange-traded to auction-based.” As of May 18th the World Bank has monetized approximately US$160 million worth of CERs.

Read the press release

Airlines fare game for ETS?

Sky-high in fact. According to IETA President Henry Derwent, the legal battle surrounding the inclusion of airlines in the EU carbon market is not likely to fly under the radar – and could even undermine upcoming climate talks. The EU is facing a lawsuit brought by US airlines rejecting the inclusion of aviation in its emissions trading scheme, arguing that it exceeds its jurisdiction and imposes an improper tax or charge. According to Derwent, should the EU lose the court case it will be made to look foolish at the December talks in Durban. The court decision “will be a significant moment,” he said. “We are seeing unfolding before our eyes a very important part of the post-Kyoto world.”

Read the Bloomberg article

Global Policy Update

A taxing matter

A new report delivered to the Australian parliament this week not only warns of the dire social, economic and environmental impacts of climate change – but may have served to bolster Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s carbon tax campaign. The Critical Decade report – written by the government-appointed Climate Commission – concludes that the impacts of climate change are already being felt in Australia, and quick action is needed. “We need to use whatever means we can to sequester carbon but also start reducing emissions from industry,” said Commission Chief Tim Flannery. “We need some sort of price on carbon. A price is unavoidable.” While Gillard welcomed the report, opposition leader Tony Abbott remained unmoved – describing a carbon price as “toxic” for heavy polluters.

Read the report
Read more from BusinessGreen
Read more from Reuters

Knowing is halve the battle…

That’s the approach being taken by the UK government, which last week announced the most ambitious GHG targets of any developed country – including a pledge to cut emissions in half by 2025. EU Commissioner for Climate Action Connie Hedegaard praised the target, calling it “a recognition that to be very ambitious on public spending does not mean you can’t be ambitious on climate change targets.” The “carbon budget” was announced by Energy Secretary Chris Huhne, who confirmed that although reductions would be made through domestic activity, the government would not rule out the use of offsets.

Read more from the Guardian
Read more from BusinessGreen

You’ve come a long way, biomethane…

… but you’ve still got a long way to go, say experts. Although China reportedly has particularly favorable conditions for the development of the biomethane sector, there are a number of obstacles to hurdle before it can be considered industrialized. Largely built on the work of farmers – many of whom have built small projects for their own needs – the sector lacks the infrastructure necessary for commercialization, and most of the gas and power produced is not connected to the grid. Industry analysts are urging government to support the establishment of the industry – and to launch a carbon-trading program to fuel growth.

Read the Renewable Energy World article

Carbon Finance

GIB a little bit

The British Green Investment Bank (GIB) – flagship of the coalition government’s green policy – will start lending money to fund low-carbon energy projects from as early as April 2012, a year earlier than initially planned. The announcement was made by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who confirmed that the bank will be backed by an initial £3 billion investment from government – leveraging up to £15 billion in private sector investment over the next four years. Clegg also restated that the institution will not have borrowing powers until April 2015, and then only if “the government target for debt to be falling as a percentage of GDP has been met.”

Read more from BusinessGreen
Read more from Reuters

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Ecosystem Marketplace is a project of Forest Trends, a tax-exempt corporation under Section 501(c)3. This newsletter and other dimensions of our voluntary carbon markets program are funded by a series of international development agencies, philanthropic foundations, and private sector organizations. For more information on donating to Ecosystem Marketplace, please contact [email protected].

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