Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.
Oct 6

Zurich Carbon Market Association: Offsetting and/or finance contributions?

October 6, 2021 @ 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Zurich Carbon Market Association Virtual Workshop
Co hosted by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and Perspectives 

06 October 2021
17:00 – 19:00 CEST | 11:00 – 13:00 EDT



Article 6 of the Paris Agreement (PA) provides two approaches to international carbon markets which allow balancing out emissions with at least an equivalent volume of mitigation outcomes achieved abroad, commonly referred to as “offsetting”. Such offsetting can relate to national emissions targets under NDCs, but also voluntary targets of private and other non-state actors. Countries engaging in or authorising the international transfer of mitigation outcomes need to ensure robust accounting to avoid double counting through double bookkeeping, so-called ‘corresponding adjustments’.

There are three main uses of offset credits: Compliance with mitigation obligations and carbon pricing instruments, voluntary offsetting that enables actors with emissions to make carbon neutrality claims, and credit cancellation in the context of results-based finance for mitigation. Our event addresses the latter two use cases, where different positions of stakeholders have surfaced. The controversial point is whether the mitigation outcomes that are or may be counted towards host country targets can simultaneously be eligible for offsetting by non-state stakeholders on the voluntary carbon market(s) without the need for corresponding adjustments. Recently, there have been calls to distinguish accounting for credits traded on the voluntary carbon market(s) based on their use, with an emerging distinction of “offsetting” vs. “finance contributions” to be delivered by the use of a carbon credit.

The event features representatives of carbon market regulators, voluntary market standard setting bodies and activity developers/intermediaries. It will discuss purposes of carbon credit use in different voluntary carbon market segments, how these purposes can be best defined and their implications for accounting for voluntary carbon market actions in the context of the Paris Agreement.


Moderated by: Axel Michaelowa, University of Zurich/Perspectives

17:00-17:05 – Setting the scene and agenda

  • Philipp Ischer, SECO

17:05-17:15 – Definitions of use cases under voluntary carbon markets

  • Hanna-Mari Ahonen, Perspectives

17:15-17:45 – Panel discussion I on use cases on the voluntary carbon market(s)

  • Hugh Salway, Gold Standard
  • Naomi Swickard, Verra
  • Gesa Schöneberg, Foundation Development and Climate Alliance

17:45-18:15 – Panel discussion II on regulating the voluntary carbon market(s)

  • Perumal Arumugam, UNFCCC Secretariat
  • Melissa Pinfield, VCMI
  • Maria Carvalho, South Pole

18:15-19:00: Discussion with participants


06 October 2021
17:00 – 19:00 CEST | 11:00 – 13:00 EDT


Event Location