Letter from the CEO
Dear Friends & Colleagues,
As 2012 gets underway, we are gearing up for a busy year. Our role at VCS has always been to provide tools that allow projects to generate and scale up real GHG emission reductions – and to demonstrate effective and scalable approaches along the way. It seems this role may be more important than ever in 2012. The new Durban platform has set the stage for a shared global agreement, but details remain thin and an agreement is still several years away.
We believe we can best support the market by focusing VCS efforts in three key areas. Here is a short list of our goals for 2012:
Continue pursuing links with new markets and programs, including initiatives like:
- The new VCS-Crown Standard (Thailand) label launched in January (see below for more information);
- Recognition by emerging voluntary frameworks such as those in Australia, Costa Rica and Chile; and
- Exploring opportunities to open up new overseas offices, to follow on the opening of the first VCS overseas office in Chile.
Continue developing requirements to extend carbon crediting into new areas, including initiatives such as:
- New rules for standardized methods to be released 1 February;
- New rules for jurisdictional and nested REDD crediting to be released mid-2012 and;
- New requirements for wetland rewetting and conservation to be released in mid-2012.
Continue increasing support for key program functions such as methodology development and oversight of registries and validation/verification services, with initiatives like:
- A new VVB guidance manual to be released in 2012, part of ongoing efforts to ramp up support and oversight for VVBs as they scale up their own work;
- New grace periods for revised VCS methodologies to be released 1 February as part of our efforts to provide clear guidance for methodology development.
We believe 2012 will be a key year in ensuring VCS tools are as robust as possible – and recognized and accessible to new markets. I look forward to keeping you updated on our progress in the year ahead.
VCS-Thai Crown Standard label: Thailand’s TGO establishes label for VCUs
On 23 January, VCS and Thailand’s Greenhouse Gas Management Organization (TGO) announced the establishment of a new mechanism for linking VCS credits to TGO’s Crown Standard. Projects that meet the requirements of both standards can issue Verified Carbon Units, or VCUs, specially tagged with a Crown Standard label.
The tagging mechanism is already widely used to issue VCUs tagged with labels from the Climate, Community & Biodiversity Standards and Social Carbon. TGO, a government agency and Thailand’s Designated National Authority under the UNFCCC, is the first public entity to make use of the VCS tagging mechanism. Read more
1Q Program Updates: New standardized methods, methodology grace periods
On 1 February, VCS will release a significant round of first quarter program updates, including groundbreaking new requirements for using standardized methods. Other updates will include new rules addressing the timing of emissions from carbon pools in AFOLU methodologies, updated grace periods for revised methodologies and a clarification of rules on double counting, accompanied by a policy brief explaining those rules. Be sure to check our home page on 1 February.
Open for comment: Shell cement methodologies
On 5 January, two new methodologies submitted by Leading Carbon and Shell Canada were posted for public comment on the VCS website. If approved, the methodologies would credit the carbon benefits of switching to technologies using heated sulphur products in the production of hot asphalt, concrete and concrete-based products. See the “open for comment section” of the VCS home page