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Ecosystem Marketplace beefs up carbon market tracking, analysis


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London — Sustainable markets information provider Ecosystem Marketplace is ramping up its voluntary carbon market tracking and analysis in response to a taskforce report on scaling up the market, the group said Jan. 28.

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The plan to increase activity comes after the private sector-led Taskforce on Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets published a much-anticipated report Jan. 27 with recommendations on how to improve and expand the market for voluntary emissions offset credits.

"We're integrating data from all of the major carbon offset registries, and more than tripling (at last count) the reach of our carbon survey, to offer the most comprehensive picture of what's going on in voluntary carbon markets," said Washington DC-based Ecosystem Marketplace – an initiative of not-for-profit group Forest Trends.

Ecosystem Marketplace has for several years issued annual reports detailing the evolution of the voluntary carbon markets but is now seeking to boost its offerings as the market expands.

"We're increasing access to more detailed, frequent data to improve market transparency, through a new dynamic data dashboard," the group said in a statement.

"We're aligning our database with Carney Taskforce recommendations, to better track progress on the Taskforce's stated goals," it said, in reference to the taskforce led by Mark Carney, the UN Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance, and sponsored by the Institute of International Finance.

Forest Trends CEO Michael Jenkins said demand for emissions offsets is surging as companies and governments set targets to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

"Markets are experiencing an influx in demand for voluntary carbon offsets," said Jenkins.

"We need to build upon existing market infrastructure ready to scale rapidly, including robust and credible information. It's the only way that voluntary carbon markets can grow without sacrificing quality," he said in the statement.

Edward Hanrahan of industry group the International Carbon Reduction and Offset Alliance welcomed Ecosystem Marketplace's plans to ramp up market information.

"Access to transparent and regular information on carbon credit volumes, pricing, and retirements have a key role to play as we scale voluntary carbon markets," said Hanrahan in the statement.

"Ecosystem Marketplace has long been the go-to source for objective market information through its annual market reports, and we're excited to see this shift to offering deeper, more frequent intelligence," he said.

The new suite of data platforms aims to enable more timely information on voluntary carbon market price data, transactions and dynamics, it said.

The group's new offerings include a united carbon credit issuance and retirement database from the voluntary carbon market's most prominent registries, including Verra, the Climate Action Reserve, American Carbon Registry, Gold Standard and Plan Vivo.

Future iterations will integrate data from additional market actors and Ecosystem Marketplace partners. The database will be updated monthly, with the capability to move to a daily service in the future in step with shifts in market liquidity, it said.

The group aims to reach over 650 active market participants including project originators, brokers and retailers, it said.

S&P Global Platts launched voluntary carbon credit price assessments Jan. 4 linked to projects that are eligible under the International Civil Aviation Organization's Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation.

CORSIA-eligible carbon (CEC) credits were assessed at $1.02/mt at the close Jan. 28, according to Platts assessments.