Quality Carbon Standard

The Quality Carbon Standard follows widely accepted offsetting principles for the highest quality offsets. Each project must consistently meet the following criteria to be considered a high-quality offset source.

Real: Offsets must result in an actual reduction of emissions

A critical quality concern is assuring that offsets are real. Emission reductions must be, in fact, a result of an actual change in management practices leading to a measurable net reduction of GHG emissions.

Additional: An offset project must demonstrate that was initiated in response to market incentives and would not have otherwise happened.

Additionality is a fundamental test of legitimacy for carbon offsets. Tests for additionality determine whether a project is beyond just business-as-usual. An actual change in practices must be motivated by carbon market incentives to create reductions that would not have happened without the incentives.

Transparent: All project details must be provided to the Public.

Offset projects must be transparent. Details of each project, including the type of project, tests done, measurements, and key assumptions must be provided to the public prior to discretionary agency approval. The public should be given adequate opportunities to review and comment on each project to be sure a full
disclosure of information is available to program administrators.

Valid and Verifiable: Projects must undergo conflict-free evaluation

Offset projects need to be validated and verified without financial incentive provided by project developers. Preferably, validation and verification of projects will be carried out by public agencies themselves. So called third-party entities can be under intense pressure to make decisions affecting their ability to  compete for long-term market share. Public agency review and approval should determine whether the baseline and methodologies used for the project are legitimate. Project operators must provide the necessary quantifiable evidence that claimed missions reductions are real and additional when compared to business-as-usual.

See projects evaluated against the Quality Carbon Standard on our projects page.