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New partnership: Voluntary Carbon Markets Integrity (VCMI) Initiative and We Mean Business Coalition aim to accelerate corporate climate action

Thousands of companies are working towards science-based targets to cut their greenhouse gas emission across their value chains. But as our global climate goals continue to slip out of reach, we need a new cadre of corporate climate leaders to raise their ambition and take immediate action that goes above and beyond their existing science-aligned targets.

Carbon markets are an important tool in the fight against climate change, channelling climate finance to urgently needed environmental priorities such as the protection, management and restoration of nature. Without these investments it will be impossible to get the world on track to halving emissions by 2030. When used in addition to science-based decarbonisation, high-integrity carbon credits enable business to go further and faster – but only when they’re used correctly.

The Voluntary Carbon Markets Integrity Initiative (VCMI) was launched in 2021 with the mission to enable high integrity VCMs that deliver real and additional benefits to the atmosphere, help protect nature, and accelerate the transition to ambitious, economy-wide climate policies and regulation. To that end, earlier this year, VCMI published a draft Claims Code of Practice which was put out for public consultation and road tested by 70 companies. This Claims Code puts guardrails on how carbon credits can be used, to ensure that their use genuinely contributes to the global effort to reach net zero, rather than delaying urgent action.

Through our new partnership, VCMI and the We Mean Business Coalition will deepen engagement and feedback from companies in the VCMI process. We will support companies to follow VCMI’s Claims Code, helping to ensure carbon market investments strengthen – rather than undermine – global action towards achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement.

The partnership will also help to overcome technical barriers, for example by convening partners to establish methodologies and metrics for assessing whether companies are on track to their meet their targets. Jointly, these efforts will align corporate climate action with We Mean Business Coalition’s 4 A’s of Climate Leadership framework: ambition, action, advocacy, and accountability.

Maria Mendiluce, CEO, We Mean Business Coalition said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with VCMI to help drive greater climate corporate leadership. The VCMI brings credibility to the voluntary carbon market and We Mean Business Coalition can make clear to the thousands of companies we work with that by aligning with this code, they can go even further in their climate ambition – both cutting emissions and helping to protect and restore nature.’

Mark Kenber, Executive Director, VCMI said: “Working with the We Mean Business Coalition on the final version of our Claims Code is an important example of the partnerships we want to form to ensure VCMI guidance helps companies worldwide that want to use carbon credits to do so with integrity.”

To learn more, please join VCMI, We Mean Business Coalition and others at COP 27 to discuss how we aim to deliver a well-regulated voluntary carbon market with integrity at its core. We will explore how we use it to unlock much-needed private-sector finance to help achieve the Paris Agreement targets and UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Saturday, November 12th

17:30 EET to 18:30 EET

Auditorium A of the Business Pavilion @ COP27 

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