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Winrock International

Winrock and VCMI partner to improve claims code of practice

Updated guidance for companies on best practices for using carbon credits and making related claims is set to be released later in 2023.

Winrock International is excited to announce a new partnership with the Voluntary Carbon Markets Integrity Initiative (VCMI) to produce an operable VCMI Claims Code of Practice for voluntary use of carbon credits. The purpose of the Claims Code of Practice is to provide clear guidance to companies and other non-state actors on when and how they can credibly make voluntary use of carbon credits as part of their net zero commitments and climate mitigation strategies, and the claims they can make about that use.

In 2021, VCMI launched a consultation with stakeholders from civil society, the private sector, Indigenous peoples’ groups, governments, businesses, and others to gather views on how carbon credits can be voluntarily used and claimed by businesses as part of credible net zero strategies. This informed the Provisional Claims Code of Practice that was published for corporate “road testing” and public consultation in June 2022. All stakeholders were invited to participate in an open public consultation to provide input. Feedback was collected from June to September 2022.

Winrock is working with the VCMI technical team to incorporate feedback from the road test and public consultation, and to contribute directly to the underpinning analysis and drafting of the final Claims Code of Practice to be published later in 2023. Brad Schallert, Winrock’s Director of Net Zero Services, is serving as Special Advisor to VCMI and leading Winrock staff who are teaming up with VCMI.  

“In the public consultation and road test, VCMI received useful feedback that we can use to improve the clarity, logical consistency, and overall impact of the VCMI Claims Code that incentivizes companies to make more substantial reductions in value chain emissions while using carbon credits in a complementary manner,” Schallert said. “In addition, the claims that companies make related to those actions must not mislead the public and should be informative so as to help consumers understand the underlying corporate actions represented by those claims.”

Mark Kenber, VCMI’s Executive Director, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Winrock, and Brad Schallert in particular, as we finalize the VCMI Claims Code of Practice. Winrock has wide and deep experience and expertise across carbon markets and so is the ideal partner for us as we develop what will soon represent best practice for corporate engagement with voluntary carbon markets.”