The underlying principle of carbon compensation is that a given quantity of greenhouse gas emitted in one location can be “compensated” by the reduction or containment of an equivalent quantity of greenhouse gas in another location.
This principle of geographic neutrality is at the heart of the mechanisms put in place by the Kyoto Protocol. This text, written in 1997, defines the obligations of the signing countries in the fight against climate change and the means implemented, in particular by the establishment of flexibility mechanisms.
As such, the goal is to put a price on carbon and to put pressure on the primary emittors of GHGs so that in the long run, it will be more profitable to reduce one’s own emissions rather than buying carbon credits. Learn more
In parallel with these mechanisms, voluntary compensation applies to actors not subject to obligations under the Kyoto Protocol (for example, collectivities, individuals, or businesses not subject to quotas). It is developed progressively by applying rules similar to those applied for the Clean Development Mechanism. Voluntary compensation labels have thus been created to attest to the conformity of the projects. In France, ADEME has also initiated the creation of a charter of voluntary compensation. Learn more
In order to insure the reliability and credibility of the system and of delivered carbon credits, voluntary compensation labels were created. These include the VCS (Verified Carbon Standard), the Gold Standard, the CCBS (Climate, Community & Biodiversity Standard). Learn more