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Briefings
30 Jun 2021

Two Shades of Green: How hot air forest credits are being used to avoid carbon taxes in Colombia

Update 1 July: Verra published a statement in response to this report, questioning its findings and accusing it of using flawed methodologies. Our response to Verra is available here. Executive summary The Colombian government adopted a carbon tax of approximately US$5/tCO2e covering fossil fuels in 2016. Companies can avoid paying the tax by purchasing carbon…

Briefings
24 Nov 2020

Carbon markets and agriculture – why offsetting is putting us on the wrong track

A joint briefing by Carbon Market Watch, Secours Catholique, CCFD – Terre Solidaire and Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy (IATP) Executive summary Climate mitigation projects in the agriculture sector, particularly those focused on storing carbon in soils, are increasingly being tied to carbon markets. But the impact of these initiatives is highly questionable. First,…

Letters
23 Jul 2018

Letter to EU Commissioners on human rights and climate finance

To Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis To President Jean-Claude Juncker;  Vice-President Jyrki Katainen; Director-General Olivier Guersent and Head of Unit Martin Spolc. Dear Vice-President Dombrovskis, We warmly thank you for your response to our letter of 22 March 2018, titled “On a Human Rights Mandate for the Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance” 1, and welcome the…

Letters
3 Nov 2017

Carbon Market Watch recommendations for COP23

Dear Respected Colleague, Carbon Market Watch is pleased to share our SBSTA, SBI, and APA recommendations as well as an overview of our upcoming events and recent publications (below). Phase out Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) To reach the objectives of the Paris Agreement, it is essential to learn from past experience avoid the mistakes made with…

Letters
4 Mar 2016

Open letter to EU Officials on Human Rights

We are writing on behalf of the undersigned organisations and members of the Human Rights and Climate Change Working Group[1], in advance of the UNFCCC Conference of the State Parties in Paris from November 30-December 11, 2015.

Briefings
22 Dec 2015

Paris outcomes: Carbon Market Watch Analysis of COP 21

From 30 November to 12 December 2015, Parties to the UNFCCC met in Paris to negotiate a new global climate treaty.

The Paris Agreement was a remarkable outcome, especially after the failures of Copenhagen. Almost all involved, including Carbon Market Watch, seemed surprised at how positive the outcome was. However, expectations had been carefully managed in the preceding years, so that aspirations of environmentalists to have a treaty that reflected the scientific reality by dividing up the remaining global carbon budget, had been downplayed into unreality.

Briefings
30 Nov 2015

Report: Using nature to pardon environmental pollution – Risks of agriculture sequestration carbon offsets

Agriculture supports the livelihoods of around a half of the world’s population, but is at the same time a notable source of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) driving climate change. As of one the options to tackle emissions in the sector, governments have been discussing to include additional agricultural activities into the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the United Nations Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) since 2011. Whether agricultural activities should be eligible for carbon offsetting programmes is not only topical within discussions in the UNFCCC but also within certain regional cap-and-trade schemes and discussions to establish a market based mechanism for international aviation emissions, expected to be adopted in October 2016 under the auspices of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Briefings
30 Nov 2015

Policy Brief: Fossil and biological carbon: a tonne is not a tonne

Whether biological carbon credit should be traded in carbon markets is topical, with discussions ongoing in the UNFCCC, ICAO and the California Cap-and-Trade system. To date, compliance markets have rejected the eligibility of biological carbon offsets. They are right to do so. Fossil and biological carbon operate on different parts of the carbon cycle, and on very different timescales. Fossil carbon is permanent; biological carbon is potentially and frequently subject to rapid fluxes, whether natural or manmade. For these reasons, offset credits from REDD+, afforestation and reforestation or other biological systems should not be treated as fungible with fossil carbon, but should instead be addressed through other, appropriate, policy measures.

Briefings
20 Nov 2015

Recommendations related to the role of carbon markets in the Paris Agreement

Only very few countries have outlined in their Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) that they will use international trading as a means to help achieve their climate goals. However, despite the limited role of markets expressed by most industrialised countries in their INDCs, such as the EU and the US, the political reality regarding domestic carbon pricing schemes looks different: jurisdictions responsible for 40% of the global economy have already implemented carbon pricing mechanisms.

Briefings
7 Nov 2015

Report of the 11th Board meeting of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board

Between 2-5 November 2015, the 11th meeting of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board was held in Livingstone, Zambia. This meeting was a landmark for the GCF as for the first time the Board considered actual funding proposals to be approved and funded by the GCF.