Climate change

Voluntary Carbon Markets


OECD work on voluntary carbon markets explores ways to ensure environmental integrity in the voluntary offset markets, and to build on expertise gained in voluntary markets to move towards a compliance market.


Voluntary Carbon Markets: How can they serve climate policies?
By Pierre Guigon, BlueNext
This paper aims to examine how voluntary carbon markets can provide a valuable contribution to strengthening domestic and international climate policies. The research shows that the several carbon project certification schemes that have emerged in the voluntary carbon market have developed potential innovative solutions to deal with some of the issues faced by compliance markets.


Buying and Cancelling Allowances as an Alternative to Offsets for the Voluntary Market: A Preliminary Review of Issues and Options
By Anja Kollmuss and Michael Lazarus, Stockholm Environment Institute
In recent years, businesses, local governments and individuals have set goals for reducing their emissions of greenhouse gases. In addition to directly reducing their own emissions, many of these entities have purchased carbon offsets to help achieve their mitigation goals. Yet establishing offset quality can be difficult, due to issues such as additionality, measurement, leakage, permanence, and verification. This paper explores scenarios under which, as an alternative to offsets, voluntary buyers could instead buy and cancel allowances from compliance markets.