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TerraPass becomes first company to list VCS project

We are pleased to announce that TerraPass is the first carbon offset company to list a project validated under the Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS) in the new APX VCS registry. This gets a bit technical, so let me explain.

Since TerraPass was founded in 2004, every carbon offset we’ve sold has been validated using independent, third-party standards to ensure their quality. Those standards have evolved over the years as our industry has grown and matured. One of the standards that we rely on heavily today is the Voluntary Carbon Standard, an international protocol with wide industry support.

VCS recently launched a small set of registries, which are basically central repositories for tracking the creation and sale of offsets. Registries are an important safeguard, because they guarantee that any particular offset can’t be sold more than once or double-counted. For TerraPass customers, in particular, a registry provides another guarantee that the emissions reduction you fund is permanent and won’t be used by anyone else to balance out his footprint.

Why does it matter that TerraPass is the first company to list a U.S. project? From the point of view of project quality, it doesn’t, really — our projects are of equally high quality whether they’ve been listed or not. We’ve always submitted ourselves to an outside audit to ensure that no double-counting is taking place. So the VCS registry just provides an extra layer of assurance.

But from the point of view of our role as a small company trying hard to pull the voluntary carbon market forward, we’re pretty proud of achieving this milestone first!

We’ve posted the full announcement here (pdf). As always, thanks for your support.

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