The Plastic Waste Reduction Program (Plastic Program) enables the robust impact assessment of new or scaled-up waste collection and recycling projects. Projects registered with Verra’s Plastic Program can issue Plastic Credits for their plastic waste collection and/or recycling activities.
Projects collecting and/or recycling any plastic (or composite material) may be eligible to issue Plastic Credits for their activities which can be sold to finance the project. A project may be a single instance of an activity operating at a specific location or multiple instances of an activity operating in a specific region.
All Plastic Program projects must complete a rigorous development and assessment process before registering with the Plastic Program and issuing Plastic Credits. The Develop a Project under Verra’s Plastic Program: A Quick Guide outlines the project development and registration process.
To explore real-world projects in Verra’s Plastic Program, visit the Verra Registry, which lists registered projects and projects pursuing registration.
The diagram below illustrates an example of how a plastic project may generate Plastic Credits. The end destination of collected plastic waste may vary depending on the project.
Rules and Requirements
The Plastic Program rules define the standards and processes which all projects must follow to be certified. The Plastic Program rules are set out in a suite of documents which include three types of program documents: Requirements, Templates and Forms, and Guidance.
These documents are updated periodically. Please check this page to be sure you are using the latest version of a given document.
Plastic Program methodologies set out detailed procedures for quantifying the plastic waste collected and/or recycled as the result of a project activity and provide guidance to help project developers determine project boundaries, set baselines and assess additionality.
The types of methodologies approved for use by Plastic Program projects include the Plastic Waste Collection Methodology and the Plastic Waste Recycling Methodology which cover all activities currently within the scope of the Plastic Program. Project proponents should review the requirements of each methodology, in conjunction with the Plastic Standard, to understand if their collection or recycling activity is eligible.
Validation and Verification
An independent validation and verification process ensures the integrity of the projects registered in Verra’s Plastic Program. Auditors known as validation/verification bodies (VVBs) assess projects against the Plastic Program rules and the requirements of the applied methodology(ies). VVBs are qualified, independent third parties that are approved by Verra to perform validation and verification services with the Plastic Program.
There are two types of Plastic Credits issued under the Plastic Program: Waste Collection Credits (WCCs) and Waste Recycling Credits (WRCs). A Plastic Credit represents one metric tonne of plastic waste that has been collected or recycled, respectively. Plastic Credits are issued based on the volume of plastic collected and recycled above baseline rates (i.e., what would have happened in the absence of the project activity). Each Plastic Credit has a unique serial number associated with it, and Plastic Credits may be labeled with additional certifications as described below.
Plastic Program quality assurance principles ensure all Plastic Credits represent collected and/or recycled plastic waste that is additional, real and measurable, conservatively estimated, independently audited, as well as uniquely numbered and transparently listed.
Plastic Credits are ultimately purchased and retired by an end user to help address their plastic waste footprint. All Plastic Credit issuance and retirement records are publicly available on the Verra Registry.
Note: Verra maintains an impartial position in the market and does not hold, transact or solicit trades of Plastic Credits.
Plastic Credits are not suitable investments for individuals. If you have been approached to purchase Plastic Credits as an investment or if you have any questions, please contact Verra.
The Verra Registry is the cornerstone for the implementation of Verra’s standards and programs. It facilitates the transparent listing of information on registered projects and projects pursuing registration, issued and retired units, and enables the trading of units. It is the central repository for all information and documentation relating to Verra projects and credits. The Verra Registry also ensures the uniqueness of projects and credits in the system.
Governance and Development
The Plastic Waste Reduction Program is managed by Verra with the support of the Plastic Program Advisory Group (PPAG). The PPAG is a multi-stakeholder, cross-sectoral group that helps ensure that the Plastic Program can best meet the needs of the plastic credit market and is well-positioned to enable the delivery of credible plastic waste reduction.
The Plastic Program was developed over two years starting in January 2019 with the support of the Plastic Standard Development Committee (PSDC), a multi-stakeholder body (learn more in the Plastic Waste Reduction Standard Terms of Reference).
Complaints and Appeals Policy
Verra provides a Complaints and Appeals Policy that applies to all standards and programs managed by Verra