global perspectives

The role of VCMI and philanthropic funders in supporting carbon market readiness

03 December 2023 / WORDS BY Pollination

While many countries are keen on leveraging both voluntary and compliance-based carbon markets to reach their climate goals, capacity gaps can make it difficult to make significant headway. New research from Pollination, commissioned by the Voluntary Carbon Market Integrity Initiative (VCMI), highlights the pressing need for countries to access tailored support to more effectively operate in the carbon market space.

Drawing insights from governments, carbon market readiness program organisers, Indigenous peoples, and local communities, Pollination’s report delves into the support currently being offered, the areas in which host countries’ needs are not being thoroughly addressed, and the tangible recommendations for how VCMI and other philanthropic funders can use their unique strengths to spur greater involvement in high-integrity carbon markets.

Unlocking the potential of carbon markets hinges on equipping key actors with the tools and knowledge they need to fully engage, as noted by Rick Saines, Managing Director at Pollination. “Impressive progress has been made to date by carbon market readiness initiatives. However, we heard directly from countries and market actors that gaps remain to unlock and maximise participation in carbon markets. This report will inform the strategic funding decisions of philanthropies as well as the broader donor community, providing them with a pathway to support countries to access carbon markets,” noted Saines.

The range of recommendations offered in the report includes speeding up private investment by reducing risk, fostering in-country coordination for holistic policy development, crafting specialised capacity training for legal experts in host countries to ensure fair negotiations, and adopting a more coordinated approach to carbon market readiness communications.

Mark Kenber, Executive Director at VCMI, states, “the findings in this report will be critical to inform the next phases of VCMI’s carbon market access strategies programme, which is designed to support the equitable uptake of carbon market mechanisms globally and enable countries to achieve and enhance their climate targets.”



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