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How offset programs assess and approve projects and credits

Carbon Management 1:1, 119-134

Author(s): Kollmuss, A. ; Lee, C.M. ; Lazarus, M.
Year: 2010

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets

Description: Over the past decade, some offset programs have developed sophisticated processes to review offset projects, approve or reject them, and issue credits based on their performance. This paper reviews offset project approval and credit issuance processes for three compliance market programs and five programs that issue offset credits for the voluntary carbon market. It is important for policymakers to understand differences and recognize lessons learned from existing programs for the design and possible linking of future offset programs and markets. This paper provides an initial comparison of the decision-making structures of offset programs and discusses best practices. It suggests that an in-depth evaluation and comparison of program performance will be necessary to identify how program design impacts offset performance and quality.

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