The Voluntary Carbon Standard registry system is now able to transfer carbon emission offsets across different registries, after several months of delays due to technical reasons, according to the Voluntary Carbon Standard Association, reports Reuters.
Eliminating the need for a central clearing house, this is the first time independent registries have a framework to communicate directly with each other and to transfer units from one registry to another, reports Reuters.
As a result, transferring offsets called Voluntary Carbon Units (VCUs) across different registries should boost liquidity in the voluntary carbon market, reports Reuters.
It should also encourage more interest from the United States as efforts are made to advance climate change legislation, which could include a total of up to 2 billion metric tons of offsets a year to be used in a cap-and-trade scheme from domestic and international sources, according to the news agency.
Carbon credits totaling 123 million metric tons, valued at $705 million, were transacted in the global voluntary carbon market in 2008, according to New Energy Finance and Ecosystem Marketplace estimates, reports Reuters.
However, more than 50 percent of those offset credits were originally targeted for the United Nation’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), but were delayed by bottlenecks in the pipeline process.