The Latest

September Newsletter: Standardized methods unveiled for baselines and additionality

Letter from CEO David Antonioli

Dear Friends & Colleagues,

I am delighted to report that we have posted some groundbreaking new work for public consultation – new draft requirements for streamlined approaches to setting baselines and assessing additionality. Our hope is that these new requirements will make it possible for you, our voluntary carbon market stakeholders, to develop innovative new projects to curb carbon emissions at lower cost and larger scale. And since it is you who will be using these rules, I invite and encourage you all to read the summary below – and then click on through to our website to read and comment on the draft requirements themselves. Your input and experience will help make these new rules the very best they can be.

It is no easy feat developing bottom-up requirements for standardized approaches (ie, performance benchmarks and positive lists) – and we owe a debt of gratitude to the steering committee members who contributed so generously of their time to this work. The quality of their effort really shows in these initial draft requirements – we hope you will take a few moments to add your own insights and perspectives.

Sincerely,
David Antonioli

Program Updates

Expert committee unveils draft standardized methods for additionality, baselines

On 1 September, draft requirements for two new standardized methods, or specific approaches, for determining baselines and additionality were released for public consultation. The draft requirements, which have been incorporated directly into three VCS Program documents and posted online, are open for comment until 30 October at 6 p.m. US EDT. Read the draft requirements and send comments to secretariat@v-c-s.org.

The new standardized methods in the draft requirements are performance methods and activity methods. Performance methods set performance benchmarks, or metrics, that project activities must meet or exceed to be considered additional. Activity methods use a positive list to pre-determine additionality for classes of activities not financially viable without carbon finance, with no revenue streams other than carbon finance, or with low rates of adoption in the marketplace. Read the consultation document.

Webinar on Draft Requirements TODAY, 13 September at 10:00 a.m. US EDT

VCS Director of Program Development Jerry Seager and the steering committee chairman, DNV Climate Change Services Director of Services and Technologies Michael Lehmann, will describe the new requirements in detail.Register for the webinar.

VCS Version 3 only game in town: Grace period for Version 2007.1 ends

On 8 September, the VCS Version 3 documentation came into full force as the grace period for referencing VCS Version 2007.1 documents ended. Projects referencing 2007.1 must have completed all validation reports by 8 September 2011 (although verification reports may still be issued for projects validated to 2007.1 requirements). To reference the detailed Version 3 requirements see our Program Documents page.

Methodology pipeline

Improved freight efficiency methodology nears end of consultation phase

On 12 August, a methodology to compensate freight transport operations that improve fuel efficiency was submitted for approval under VCS. The methodology, proposed by Axios Mobile Assets Corporation, would apply to freight operations that use lighter pallets, the structures that support goods during handling, storage, and transportation. The methodology is open for comment until 13 September.

FAO submits sustainable grasslands management methodology

On 7 September, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations sowed the seeds for a methodology to improve carbon sequestration on degraded grasslands. The new methodology would compensate livestock herders who implement sustainable grassland management without significant increases in fossil fuel use. The methodology is open for comment until 6 October.

REDD module VMD0007 revision approved

On 8 September, VCS approved a revision to module VMD0007, allowing projects to estimate emissions from unplanned deforestation using the observed relationship between population and deforestation. The module, one of the VM0007 REDD Methodology Modules, was revised by the Field Museum and assessed and approved through the VCS methodology approval process. Read more about the module.

VCS Association Updates

VCSA staff to attend IETA Latin American Carbon Forum 2011

CEO David Antonioli and other VCS staff members will attend IETA’s Latin American Carbon Forum in San José, Costa Rica from 27-29 September. David has been invited to speak on the Wednesday afternoon plenary session¿Qué pasa, America? Prospects for offsets and trading North & South. We hope you will stop by the VCS booth to say hello to staff and learn more about our latest work.