ICAO receives eight more applications from carbon programmes seeking offset eligibility under CORSIA
Thu 28 May 2020 – ICAO has received eight applications from emissions unit programmes in the second round of assessments by its Technical Advisory Body (TAB), along with material updates to two applications in the first round. The public is invited to comment by June 26 on the new applications and updates, in particular regarding their alignment with ICAO’s emissions unit criteria (EUC). The programmes range from a project to supply geothermal-generated electricity to Kenya’s national grid to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a cooperative effort of 10 eastern US states to cap and reduce CO2 emissions from the power sector. The TAB’s assessment and recommendations are expected for consideration by the ICAO Council during its session in early November. A third round of applications is planned to begin in January 2021.
Under CORSIA, eligible emissions units must originate from programmes that have procedures and measures in place to meet the EUC. Projects generating units must have started their first crediting period from 1 January 2016 and reductions must occur no later than 31 December 2020. Six programmes were deemed eligible in the first round, although not all units from them are eligible for use in CORSIA. The TAB does not assess offset retailers or project developers, which led some in the first round to fail with their applications.
The eight second round programmes applying are:
Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART) – Established in June 2018, ART is administered by US non-profit Winrock International and, says its programme submission to ICAO, is a “global voluntary initiative to promote the environmental and social integrity and ambition of carbon emission reductions from the forest sector to catalyse new, large-scale finance for REDD+.”
BioCarbon Fund Initiative for Sustainable Forest Landscapes (ISFL) – The World Bank acts the trustee and secretariat of ISFL, a multilateral fund with financial contributors including the governments of Norway, Germany, Switzerland, United Kingdom and United States that are represented in the governance of the fund. BioCarbon Fund, established in 2004, was the first carbon fund established globally with a focus on land use and the ISFL, established in 2013, collaborates with national governments to reduce emissions from land use through smart land use planning, policies and practices.
CERCARBONO – The Colombian-based private voluntary carbon programme offers certification and registration of projects that generate carbon credits through GHG removal or reduction. Its certification programme started in 2018 and operates in the Colombian carbon market. The regulatory framework also allows it to operate internationally.
Compte CO2 – The programme is run by French organisation 450, which was created in 2010 and administers standards and procedures for developing activities that generate offsets, and for verifying and issuing offsets created by those activities. With the ending of the first Kyoto period, 450 has moved from being a project developer to an emissions unit programme, focusing on former UNFCCC JI methodologies.
Joint Crediting Mechanism between Japan and Mongolia – Administered by Japan’s ministries responsible for environment, trade and foreign affairs, the project-based bilateral crediting mechanism was inaugurated in 2013. It started operations as an internationally non-tradeable credit type mechanism but a transition towards a tradable mechanism is being considered by the two sides.
Olkaria IV Geothermal Project – The renewable energy project is administered by Kenya Electricity Generating Company and utilises steam collected from geothermal wells for electricity generation. The project was registered under the CDM and the start of the crediting period was September 2014.
Perform, Achieve and Trade Scheme – Administered by India’s Ministry of Power, PAT is an initiative under the National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency, which is one of the eight missions under National Action Plan on Climate Change. PAT is a regulatory instrument to reduce specific energy consumption in energy intensive sectors, with an associated market-based mechanism to enhance the cost-effectiveness through certification of excess energy savings which can be traded.
Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative – RGGI is the first mandatory, market-based CO2 emissions reduction programme in the United States, covering Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont. Each state’s CO2 Budget Trading Program limits CO2 emissions from electric power plants, issues CO2 allowances and establishes participation in regional CO2 allowance auctions.
Two programmes that were assessed in the first round, the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility and Verified Carbon Standard (managed by Verra) have supplied the TAB with updates to their original applications. FCPF was not among those recommended by the TAB for CORSIA eligibility but was invited to address shortcomings over standards and procedures, and resubmit its application, which it has now done.
VCS was adopted as an eligible programme by the ICAO Council but Verra was recommended to take certain actions, including over its registry system.
All 10 applications and updates, along with details on the public consultation, are posted on the ICAO TAB website.
Programmes are only approved to supply CORSIA-eligible emissions units in the 2021-2023 pilot phase. To be eligible for future compliance cycles, the TAB has indicated programmes will need to be re-assessed.