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Another Big Month for VCM Carbon Credit Retirements.

Read more in the March 15 edition of Invert Insights.


VCM carbon credit retirements are on track for a record breaking year.

Carbon Pulse reported that if this pace continues the number of VCM carbon credits retirements from the four big standard bodies will reach almost 233M in 2024, representing the largest annual total to date by a wide margin, up from the 161M retired in 2021.

Data from the Carbon Pulse VCM Portal shows that the retirements of VCM carbon credits from Verra, Gold Standard, ACR and CAR carbon registries reached 17.84M credits, down slightly from January which saw 20.34M credits retired. The sector with the most retirements was Forestry and Land Use at over 50% of all credits retired, followed by the Renewable Energy sector retiring around 25% as highlighted in the AlliedOffsets March 2024 Corporate Buyers Report.

Looking at retirements by day, an average of 615,213 credits were retired.

Here’s where VCM carbon credits were retired:

Where VCM carbon credits were retired from in February 2024

The top retirer in February was Italian oil & gas company Eni, who retired 4.22M credits on the Verra registry. Shell was second on the list with over 1.9m credits also retired from Verra; with 22k of those credits labeled as CORSIA-eligible on the ACR registry. 

February also saw an increase in the number of VCM carbon credits issued, with 18.5M credits issued, up from 18M in January.

Here’s where VCM carbon credits were issued:

Where VCM carbon credit retirements were issued to in February 2024

Invert Insights.

💡 This surge in retirements and issuances highlights the growing trust and interest in the Voluntary Carbon Market, which bodes well for the industry as a whole. The continued willingness of large corporations to retire credits as part of their decarbonization strategy is a promising sign, and as new organizations establish their carbon credit strategy, we can expect to see correlated, sustained growth.

💡 As we anticipate more consistent evaluation metrics for carbon projects and standardization across the carbon markets, we can expect the quality of credits available for purchase to continue to increase.

💡 The influx of new credits being issued, especially those that meet stringent global principles like the Core Carbon Principles (CCPs), will help increase interest and attract new carbon credit buyers who may have been more cautious otherwise.