UPDATED 10 July 2023


Gold Standard launches public consultation on future of voluntary carbon market

Gold Standard announces a public consultation from a working group to define the role and function of the voluntary carbon market in the era of the Paris Agreement.

The Paris Agreement poses a new framework for carbon markets. While the Kyoto Protocol was limited in both coverage and ambition, the Paris Agreement applies to all countries and its ambition introduces global net zero emissions targets.

These changes prompted reflection on how the voluntary carbon market can best contribute to the goals of the Paris Agreement. With support from the German government, Gold Standard convened a working group, including WWF, CDP, WRI, The Nature Conservancy, Carbon Market Watch, ICROA and other standards bodies to define the nature of voluntary carbon credits, associated claims, and implications on accounting in this new context.

We are pleased to share the output of this working group, a statement on the role and design of the voluntary carbon market to support the goals of the Paris Agreement for public consultation. The working group notes that this statement for consultation does not formally represent the positions of the individual members of the group.

The role of voluntary carbon credits shifts from an instrument to go beyond compliance targets in the Kyoto era to an instrument to accelerate the global transition towards net zero emissions by helping close the emissions gap, the finance gap and the time gap.

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