The global voluntary carbon market (VCM) sector has exploded in recent years, and India has been an integral part of this boom. The country has become the world’s second-largest source of carbon offsets in the voluntary carbon market. As of June 2023, over 1,400 projects are registered or are under various stages of consideration in the two major crediting programmes -- Verra and Gold Standard. Indian projects account for one-fifth of the total carbon credits issued under these two programmes.
But this boom brings with it a strong whiff of fraud, finds a new report by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) and Down To Earth. ‘Discredited: Does the Voluntary Carbon Market Benefit People and Climate in India?’ begins by asking some fundamental questions: does VCM help in the reduction of global GHG emissions? Does it guarantee financial benefits to carbon-sequestering communities and sectors which would otherwise not get financing?
Programme Officer, Climate Change, CSE