in a developing country ?
This is primarily because the first carbon offset projects were historically implemented under the Clean Devlopment Mechnism (CDM).
Furthermore, for a project to be eligible for carbon offsetting, it must be additional. This means that if there were no project, there would be no CO2 savings.
This additionality is often a reality in developing countries because they do not have any technical and financial solutions to avoid CO2 emissions.
A word of warming
A carbon offset project, whether voluntary or otherwise, must meet the following minimum requirements:
- PDD Project Design Document - Technical document containing the essential, detailed project information. It is validated by an auditor and made public. go to glossary
- Public registry
- Annual verification of CO2 savings by an independent auditor
- Standard certification.
Types of offset
A carbon offset project in a developing country must be based on methodologies validated by the UNFCCC in the case of CDM projects or by standards in the case of voluntary projects.
These Kyoto carbon credits (or Certified Emission Reductions– CERs), initially confined to the regulated market, can also be purchased voluntarily by economic operators, local authorities or individuals.
Voluntary carbon credits (or Verified Emission Reductions – VERs) can only be purchased by voluntary buyers.
Methodologies for offset projects in developing countries cover a wide range of sectors from renewable energy production and agro-forestry or methane destruction through to energy efficiency.
Advantages of offesting
in developing countries
The increased greenhouse effect seen today is to a large extent due to the build-up of developed countries’ emissions since the start of the industrial revolution in the mid-19th century. Although countries in the South bear the least responsibility, they are still the prime victims of the consequences of climate change.
Carbon offset projects can move beyond their environmental dimension and help to bring about significant improvements in the living conditions of people in the South.
In that case, offsetting in a developing country forms part of a broader policy of commitment to international solidarity.