Potential Competition Among Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Registries

Date: November 14, 2008

Source: News Room

Competition among greenhouse gas (GHG) emission registries seems to be heating up, especially as President-elect Barack Obama prepares to take office and promises bold initiatives to curb climate change. Many companies, likely to be regulated under a U.S. EPA-administered cap-and-trade program, are seeking an efficient and pragmatic approach to future compliance. The search begins with choosing a GHG registry to report and track their emission reductions. Operators of a 10-year-old registry, the Greenhouse Gas Registry, is re-positioning itself as the "American Carbon Registry," in an effort to become an EPA 'feeder' GHG registry of choice," according to their statement. It was originally founded in 1997 by the Environmental Defense Fund and Environmental Resources Trust (ERT). The registry and ERT joined Winrock International in 2007 to expand its team of climate change, forestry, clean energy, agriculture and carbon market experts.

But the American Carbon Registry is expected to compete with other organizations, including the California Climate Action Registry (CCAR), a voluntary GHG registry that includes more than 300 member entities with operations around North America, and The Climate Registry (TCR), a newer registry intended to serve both voluntary and mandatory reporting programs in 39 U.S. states, Canada and several states in Mexico. CCAR hopes that its ties to the Air Resources Board, which has adopted several of the registry's protocols for recognizing voluntary GHG-offset projects, will enhance its credibility, especially under California's forthcoming mandatory climate change program.

The registries differ over standards and protocols, with some more stringent than others. The CCAR requirements are performance-based, whereby the registry drafts protocols for a certain type of project that an offset developer then must comply with, in contrast to other offset-project protocols recognized by other registries that are drafted specifically for each project. The American Carbon Registry to this point has been more closely tied to European-based methodologies for quantifying and certifying GHG emission reductions for projects.

To learn more, visit:
American Carbon Registry: www.americancarbonregistry.org.

California Climate Action Registry: www.climateregistry.org.

The Climate Registry, www.theclimateregistry.org.

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