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May 21, 2021
  • Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets, initiated by Mark Carney in 2020, launches consultation on a market governance body, legal principles of the market, and carbon credit integrity
  • Governance body to establish a high-integrity market for carbon credits as a fundamental element in delivering Paris goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius


Friday 21 May 2021, Today the Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets (the Taskforce), initiated in September 2020 by Mark Carney, UN Special Envoy on Climate Action and Finance, launches a new consultation on a market governance body, legal principles of the market, and the definition of high-quality carbon credits. Further, the Taskforce calls for initial engagement from parties interested in a role in the market’s future governance body.  

The Taskforce is backed by over 250 global companies and NGOs. It is working to establish the infrastructure for a scaled and high-integrity voluntary market for the trading and exchange of carbon credits. This includes a new umbrella governance body that will oversee the market, creation of legal principles that will support the market, and  determine the  ‘Core Carbon Principles’ (CCPs) that will define a high-quality carbon credit. The governance body will take appropriate steps to ensure that references to the CCPS are in line with their intended use.

Today’s consultation marks a key step forward in this process. Informed by in-depth engagement with Taskforce members, it sets out a proposed structure for market governance– including a Board of Directors, Expert Panel, Executive Secretariat and member-led consultation group. As well as inviting feedback on this structure and associated roles and responsibilities, the Taskforce also seeks engagement from representatives from businesses, NGOs, investor alliances and industry associations that are interested to join the governance body and the effort to grow a high-integrity voluntary carbon market.


Bill Winters, Chair of the Taskforce and Group Chief Executive, Standard Chartered commented,

“The global community needs to reach net-zero emissions by no later than 2050. Time is running out and we must act now. A high-integrity carbon market, combined with emissions reduction and high standards of reporting, holds the key to accelerating progress. Today we are calling for the establishment of a new governance body, responsible for setting the Core Carbon Principles (a threshold standard for high quality credits), clear legal standards and uniting existing, fragmented carbon credit markets in one impactful, well-run system.”

Nicolette Bartlett, Executive Director, Carbon Disclosure Project commented “CDP applauds the work the Taskforce is doing to bring so many views and challenges together in a productive way.”

Claire O’Neill, Managing Director - Climate & Energy, WBCSD commented “Carbon credits provide an important complement to decarbonization efforts. An effective carbon credit market will fund long-term projects that protect and grow natural resources, for maximum carbon sequestration. This market can support communities in emerging economies, creating jobs and supporting local communities. And they will fund R&D for the carbon reduction technologies of the future.”

Kelley Kizzier, Vice President for Global Climate, Environmental Defense Fund commented “The voluntary carbon market can provide real, credible emissions reductions that help companies and the world address the climate crisis. But not all offsets are created equal, and there can be legitimate questions about their validity & quality.  We need all of the perspectives we can get to make sure that we are continuously improving the environmental integrity of carbon credits.  The TSVCM is  facilitating this, and we hope this consultation process will accelerate an emerging consensus.”

Agustin Silvani, Senior Vice President, Conservation International commented “The science is clear. We need to rapidly reduce emissions and remove carbon from the atmosphere to safeguard our common future. High quality carbon credits and a well-functioning voluntary market offer a key pathway to increased climate ambition, while directly supporting local communities and natural ecosystems.  We encourage active public participation in this consultation to get us all closer to this goal.”

Since its launch in September 2020, the Taskforce has set up and expanded a Consultative Group including representatives from leading banks, businesses and NGOs. In its first ‘Design’ Phase the Taskforce and its Consultative Group issued and consulted on a recommended blueprint to build a fully functional voluntary carbon market and provided a roadmap for implementation. This work laid the foundations for its ‘Development and Implementation’ phase, in which its advisory board and working groups have focussed on identifying key governance gaps in the voluntary carbon market, and providing recommended solutions, developing standard contract mechanics and templates to enable trades of carbon credits and on maturing the Core Carbon Principle threshold standard.

The current consultation will close on Monday 21 June. 




About the Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets

The Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets is a private sector-led initiative working to scale an effective and efficient voluntary carbon market to help meet the goals of the Paris Agreement.

The Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets, launched by Mark Carney, UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance, is chaired by Bill Winters, Group Chief Executive, Standard Chartered and sponsored by the Institute of International Finance (IIF) under the leadership of IIF President and CEO, Tim Adams.  Annette Nazareth, Senior Counsel at Davis Polk and former Commissioner of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, serves as Operating Lead for the Taskforce, and McKinsey & Company provides knowledge and advisory support.

The TSVCM’s over 250 member institutions, represent buyers and sellers of carbon credits, standard setters, the financial sector, market infrastructure providers, civil society, international organizations and academics. An advisory board of 20 environmental NGOs, investor alliances, academics and international organizations provide guidance on TSVCM recommendations.