Standards and Carbon Neutrality: An initial review with the CARE methodology

Author: Arturo Balderas, Erika Luna, Vivek Voora

Voluntary carbon neutrality standards and initiatives (VCNSIs) have emerged over the past 3 decades to define systematic approaches to measuring, reducing, and compensating for the impacts of specific products, activities, facilities, or services on greenhouse gas emissions. Organizations can use these standards to advance their climate agenda and communicate these actions and results to stakeholders.

This report and its accompanying scorecard (available in the appendix) compare nine VCNSIs using the State of Sustainability Initiatives’ CARE methodology, which uses a comprehensive list of indicators to benchmark standards according to their coverage, assurance, responsiveness, and engagement. It aims to identify best practices among VCNSIs by comparing their potential to contribute to ambitious climate action.

VCNSIs are part of a wider suite of voluntary standards and initiatives for carbon management (VSICMs), which are explored in greater detail in our accompanying report, Voluntary Standards and Initiatives for Carbon Management: Navigating the Landscape. This publication helps private sector actors understand the four types of VSICMs and how they can help them advance their carbon management practices.