Update on Key Elements of California’s Compliance Carbon Offset Market

Winrock’s American Carbon Registry (ACR) welcomes headline speaker Rajinder Sahota from the California Air Resources Board (ARB), who will provide an overview of the state’s greenhouse gas (GHG) cap-and-trade regulation as well as updates on the development of key elements of the carbon offset market.  
Ms. Sahota will feature the status and timeline for significant milestones including ARB approval of Offset Project Registries and Verifiers, ARB review and adoption of new compliance offset protocols, and California harmonization & linkages with WCI jurisdictions.
California is the first U.S. state to approve an economy-wide cap-and-trade program, which will create the second largest carbon market in the world behind the European Union. Cap-and-trade is the cornerstone of AB32, California’s historic climate change law that mandates a reduction in carbon emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Beginning in 2013, the state’s largest sources of GHG emissions will be required to meet the regulatory caps or purchase allowances or offsets.  
The regulation includes requirements for third-party entities to be approved by ARB as Offset Project Registries (OPRs) for the California compliance program. OPRs will oversee the registration and issuance of California-eligible offsets, developed in uncapped sectors using ARB-approved compliance offset protocols or early action protocols. The projection for the use of offsets in the three compliance periods 2013- 2020 is 200 million tons at an estimated value over $5 billion.  
ACR will provide an update on its preparations to apply to serve as an ARB approved Offset Project Registry as well as other recent relevant developments.