Carbon Credits


A measurable quantity known as a “carbon credit” denotes the avoidance, reduction, or mitigation of one metric tonne of carbon dioxide (or an equivalent amount of other greenhouse gases) from entering the atmosphere. These credits are produced through programmes like reforestation programmes, renewable energy projects, or energy efficiency programmes that help lower overall greenhouse gas emissions.

What are Carbon Credits?

One carbon credit, which is a form of permission, represents one tonne of carbon dioxide that has been removed from the atmosphere. A company in order to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from industrial processes, delivery vehicles, or travel can be purchased by an individual or more typically.

Although almost any project that cuts, eliminates, destroys, or collects emissions is eligible to earn carbon credits, these credits are most frequently produced through agricultural or forestry practises. Through an intermediary or those who are directly capturing the carbon, people or businesses wishing to offset their own greenhouse gas emissions can purchase the credits. If a farmer plants trees, the landowner receives money, the company pays to reduce its emissions, and the middleman, if there is one, may profit from the transaction.

Some important points:

  • Carbon credits were developed to cut the greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Businesses are given a predetermined number of credits, which decrease over time. Any extra credits may be sold to another business.
  • Carbon credits are based on the cap-and-trade mechanism that was used to decrease sulphur pollution in the 1990s; those who cannot readily reduce emissions can still operate, albeit at a greater financial cost.

How Do Carbon Credits Work?

Nowadays reduction of GHG emissions from the atmosphere is the ultimate purpose of carbon credits.

As previously mentioned, a carbon credit is a representation of the right to emit greenhouse gases at a rate equivalent to one tonne of carbon dioxide. That is equivalent to driving 2,400 miles in terms of carbon dioxide emissions, according to the Environmental Defence Fund.

Companies or countries are given a certain number of credits, which they can exchange to help balance out overall global emissions. The United Nations states that as carbon dioxide is the main greenhouse gas, “people speak simply of trading in carbon.”

How big is the carbon credit market?

According to a September estimate from Ecosystem Marketplace, the voluntary market is expected to reach a record of $6.7 billion by the end of 2021. According to a poll conducted by the International Emissions Trading Association and published in June, traders in the European compliance market expect carbon prices to rise by 88 percent to roughly $67 per metric tonne by 2030.

The recent corporate net-zero targets and interest in achieving the worldwide climate goals outlined in the Paris Agreement to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius over preindustrial levels are the main drivers behind the voluntary market’s rapid acceleration over the course of the year.

Who uses carbon credits? 

A broad phrase that can be used under various international regulatory frameworks pertaining to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions is “carbon credit.” Businesses automatically receive a certain quantity of credits based on their sector.

Under many international regulatory frameworks pertaining to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the phrase “carbon credit” is a general one that can be used. Businesses automatically receive a certain quantity of credits based on their sector.

An oil business, for instance, is given a predetermined number of credits that are judged to be the right number for its activities and scale.

If a corporation exceeds its mandated emissions limit, it must:

Purchase credits from businesses that have reduced their emissions.

Use the credits it has stored from earlier years.

In contrast, if the business adheres to its boundaries, it can:

Credits can be sold to other businesses or saved for later use.

Virtually any approved product that includes decreasing, eliminating, or absorbing carbon emissions can be used by businesses and organisations to receive carbon credits. The European Union Emissions Trading System oversees this procedure in Europe.