Post-COP26 – Reflections on Article 6 Outcomes

Gold Standard has, over the past few years, been preparing for the transition into the Paris Agreement, considering how we can continue to represent the very highest quality of carbon credit available, while supporting and creating new opportunities for project developers and our wider stakeholder community:


Empowering gender equality: first gold standard ‘gender responsive’ credits issued

Gender equality: why it is essential in reaching the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Stark statistics from the United Nations underline the importance of gender equality in achieving the SDGs. 4.4 million more women than men live on less than US$1.90 a day in 89 countries. Almost half of teenage girls in Sub-Saharan Africa are denied education, reducing their earning potential. Women are underrepresented in leadership, and disproportionately feel the effects of environmental degradation and natural disasters.


The Business Case for Climate Adaptation: Why It’s a Profitable Investment

Recent events have starkly highlighted the urgent need for climate adaptation. The 2023 heatwaves in the Pacific Northwest and Canada, the fires in Rhodes, the devastating floods in Germany and Belgium, and Madagascar's worst drought in decades all underscore the increasing risks of climate extremes. Coupled with the latest IPCC report warning of more frequent and severe climate events, these incidents emphasise the pressing need for investment in climate adaptation strategies. The time to act is now, to both safeguard our future and seize the opportunities this challenge presents.


Navigating Complexity, Criticism and Carbon Credits

The voluntary carbon market remains a powerful tool for businesses to address their emissions, meet government and regulatory requirements, and contribute to climate change mitigation and sustainable development. However, amid recent controversy, some companies may hesitate to engage with carbon credits.


Reducing emissions one grain at a time

The most productive rice farming currently requires the flooding of paddy fields, consuming vast quantities of water. It also creates a low oxygen environment, leading to soil microbes producing methane that escapes from the water into the atmosphere.


Empowerment of women: a key ingredient for sustainable development

PHOTO Abbie Trayler-Smith / Panos Pictures

I heard the great (if controversial) pundit Christopher Hitchens make this claim in a debate. He continued that if you give women control over their own lives, perhaps a small amount of credit, “The whole floor, culturally, socially, medically, economically will rise. It works every time.”

At the time, the two points seemed to my untrained ear unrelated: economic development and gender equality. But the evidence is clear.


Showing the Climate Crisis the Red Card

Looking back on the World Cup, Qatar’s claim that it was “carbon neutral” wasn’t taken as seriously. Indeed, they led to widespread accusations of greenwashing across the media and likely more criticism of the competition than if they’d not been made at all.


The Mitigation Contribution under Article 6: key understandings and what it means for the VCM

Below is the text itself (bold font added), which forms part of the Decision on Article 6.4, the new carbon crediting mechanism that the UNFCCC will operate:

The [Article 6.4] mechanism registry shall track:


Scaling the voluntary carbon market? Let's think bigger.

At Gold Standard, we are taking steps to respond to new drivers shaping the voluntary carbon market in the new context of the Paris Agreement, the need for science-based mitigation hierarchy as well as the work of the Task Force for Scaling the Voluntary Carbon Market (TSVCM). We are also looking to the longer-term, and the role of markets in helping to achieve the global balance of emissions sinks and sources needed to achieve the goals adopted in Paris.


Climate impact claims to crowd in private sector finance

Given the binary nature of the Kyoto Protocol, under which only developed countries took on emissions limits, a “carbon neutral” target has been a simple way for companies to set ambition and take action outside their boundaries – that is, beyond what would be included in their inventory reporting – and to unlock unique claims.

Today, the picture is more complex and dynamic: