OFFSETTING

Carbon credits began to be actively used from 1997 and since the Paris Agreement they are now a standard measure for emissions reductions. Currently, there are two major markets for carbon offsets: the compliance market and the voluntary market. The compliance market is mandatory and operates under the constrains of national ETS programs and local regulators. The voluntary market is more independent of the government regulations, and it can be efficiently used in the cross-border carbon offsets around the globe.

Companies are under increasing pressure to demonstrate that they are taking the issue of climate change seriously. Carbon offsetting has a role to play in both voluntary activities, where carbon credits equaling a company’s carbon footprint are bought and retired (cancelled), and mandatory compliance markets such as the EU ETS, China ETS and California’s cap and trade system, where cheaper carbon offsets can be used in place of the official compliance carbon credits. Carbon credits fulfil their purpose when they are retired to become offsets, at which point they are cancelled and can no longer be used.

There is a bewildering array of carbon offset projects and carbon credit standards and companies sometimes find it difficult to decide what carbon offsets to buy. So much so that they can be put-off from carbon offset trading or using CERs for compliance for fear of buying the ‘wrong’ kind of carbon credit, for example one with poor environmental credentials.

Virtuse project portfolio enables clients to neutralize emissions by buying carbon credits, which support low carbon development projects around the world, such as in renewable energy, forestry or methane capture and waste management projects. The goal is to contribute to the slowdown of the process of increasing greenhouse gas concentration and the inherent impact on global climate.

Virtuse provides wide portfolio of mandatory and voluntary offsets through the Voluntary Carbon Standards, Gold Standard and International Renewable Energy Certificates, be it VCS, CERs or GS.