Joint statement: VCMI and ICVCM call on businesses to urgently decarbonize operations and demonstrate climate leadership

Ahead of COP28, the Integrity Council for the Voluntary Carbon Market (ICVCM) and the Voluntary Carbon Markets Integrity Initiative (VCMI), representing key stakeholders in the voluntary carbon market (VCM), announce their expectations for increased corporate climate action. 

  • Companies must prioritise rapid cuts to their own emissions, while using high-quality carbon credits to take responsibility for their remaining emissions. 
  • With greater opportunity to decarbonise than ever before, businesses must urgently move away from their reliance on fossil fuels. 
  • Companies must set and publicly disclose science-aligned near-term emission reduction targets, and publicly commit to reaching net zero emissions no later than 2050, across Scopes 1, 2 and 3 GHG emissions. In addition, they must buy high-quality carbon credits – representing real, verified GHG reductions and removals, which apply robust environment and social safeguards; and they should communicate about the use of those carbon credits.

VCMI and ICVCM have developed end-to-end rules for integrity in VCMs, from demand to supply sides. VCMI has delivered the Claims Code of Practice which guides companies on how they should use high-quality carbon credits and communicate about the use of those credits. The ICVCM’s Core Carbon Principles set new fundamental principles for carbon projects that will raise standards in the VCM to a consistent level of quality.

By following our guidance, buyers of carbon credits can be confident that they will not be accused of greenwashing either because of the credits that they buy or the way they use them as part of their climate goals.

In the face of climate change, nothing is more dangerous than inaction. Companies and other non-state actors play a critical role in cutting global emissions in half by 2030. That means action now. The planet cannot afford delays or excuses.

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