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In July-August 2020, Gold Standard held a public consultation on policy positions to inform evolution of rules to align with the post-2020 regulatory framework and focus our efforts to ensure widest applicability and scale of high integrity carbon markets.
Read the policy paper
We thank all those stakeholders who offered their feedback, which can be found on our consultation page>>. Key points raised include:
  • Concerns about a thoughtful, supportive transition to any new rules, with special attention to when and how corresponding adjustments are implemented to:
    • Safeguard vulnerable projects
    • Encourage more, not less, private sector participation
  • The importance of maintaining focus on avoided emissions and emission reductions amidst increasing attention on carbon removals.
  • Careful consideration for land use to use the right mechanisms (carbon credits versus climate finance) for the right impact or buyer-side claim.
In response to these policies and stakeholder input, we are pleased to announce a Voluntary Carbon Market Transition Framework, with support from the German Ministry of the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (BMU).
Working with government, civil society, and market stakeholders we will develop a roadmap to transition voluntary carbon standards to be (a) aligned with Article 6 of the Paris Agreement to remain ambitious and credible, (b) accessible and equitable for host countries and engaged parties, and (c) operational and scalable to contribute significantly to Paris climate goals.  
  • Practitioner guidance to be updated based on outcomes of ongoing Article 6 negotiations, including assessment criteria and process for application of ‘corresponding adjustments’ where needed to avoid the risk of double claiming.
  • Transition criteria and processes for existing high quality, vulnerable CDM projects.
  • Registry development to ensure data interoperability to ensure transparent, credible reporting in a heterogeneous international climate framework.
  • Stakeholder outreach both to inform the programme design and to build capacity for market participants.
Read full press release
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Project developers

  • Optionality on corresponding adjustments: Corresponding adjustments are NOT required for voluntary projects. Rather, project developers have the option to seek corresponding adjustments if they want to ensure their credits are eligible in the future for “offsetting” or “compensation” claims by end buyers and for accessing certain markets that specifically do require them, for example CORSIA. Further, corresponding adjustments are envisioned to be introduced in a stepwise fashion, starting with 2021 vintages – earlier in higher income countries, last in LDCs/LLDCs/SIDS.
  • Capacity building support in securing Letters of Authorisation (LoA) from host countries and operationalising corresponding adjustments if you seek them.
  • SDG Tools to more efficiently select indicators and monitor and verify your project's contributions to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These tools are just beginning to be piloted.
  • New opportunities to sell your credits in markets:
    • The scaling of existing global voluntary carbon markets
    • Gold Standard projects in Chile and South Africa are already recognised in the countries' respective domestic schemes
    • Most Gold Standard projects with crediting periods starting 2016 or after already eligible for CORSIA  
    • Supporting transition of Gold Standard CDM projects and their potential future in Article 6.4 of the Paris Agreement and identifying opportunities for Gold Standard credits in the context of Article 6.2
  • More project activity types to pursue, including soil carbon, blue carbon, and new finance-based approaches to larger scale nature based solutions.
We will host a webinar on Wednesday 04 November to field your questions about this transition framework. Please also contact us if you’d like to set up a 1:1 call to discuss these topics.


  • Continued confidence that any credits you purchase from Gold Standard consistently represent the highest levels of additionality, environmental integrity and sustainable development impact.  
  • High-quality carbon offsetting is a core element to an ambitious climate strategy to take full responsibility for your business’ climate impact during the transition to net zero.
  • Carbon removals will become important toward mid-century but focus now should be on abatement – both in internal reduction strategies and in carbon offsetting.

VCM Transition Framework: Q&A for Project Developers

We are hosting a webinar to answer any questions you may have on this transition framework and what it might mean for your project(s).

led by Owen Hewlett

Wednesday 04 Nov 2020 
15:00 – 16:30 CET


The role of carbon offsetting in Net Zero targets

Companies are making increased commitments to decarbonise, which was especially visible during the UN General Assembly with Net Zero pledges gaining significant traction. There is now clarity from the Science Based Targets initiative on the definition of Net Zero and what corporate ambition should be in terms of time and scales to reach a future Net Zero state. However, questions remain on the roadmap to get there.


Tuesday, 17 November 2020
16:00 CET



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