Navigating the energy transition: developments in the voluntary carbon markets

Author James Jones
July 19, 2023

Taylor Root recently hosted an engaging General Counsel roundtable breakfast – “Navigating the energy transition: developments in the voluntary carbon markets”. The session was led by our guest speaker, Peter Zaman, Partner at HFW followed by a highly informative discussion and Q&A.

We welcomed over 20 General Counsels and senior lawyers from the energy and commodities industries at our London office as well as those who joined remotely via a webinar. The morning started off with an informal networking session over breakfast, with attendees taking this opportunity to catch up with familiar faces and to get to know their peers from the industry. We then dove into the event with Peter’s presentation, followed by a discussion where we touched on various topics.

An important aspect of climate strategy, there is significant interest from companies to tap into the carbon markets as a way to address their emissions. However, confusion remains around how businesses can engage with carbon markets in a credible and high integrity way.

The event presented an opportunity for our attendees to hear from the expert himself – Peter, who has over 20 years of experience across the UK, EU, and Asia practicing law in climate finance and the environmental markets. Peter began our roundtable with his presentation, “demystifying critical concepts of the voluntary carbon markets”.  In his presentation, Peter helped to shed light on key definitions in the voluntary carbon markets and application of these definitions against Article 6 of the Paris agreement, including “reductions vs removals”, “double counting vs double claiming” and “offsetting claims vs contribution claims”, helping to lay out the potential impact on companies when adopting certain methodology to meet emission targets.

During the discussion, we delved into a broad array of topics including differentiating between a country’s NDC (Nationally Determined Contributions) versus a Corporates’ NDC, the different types of carbon credits available in the markets and strategies adopted by corporates when it comes to the purchase and hedging of carbon credits.

Given recent negative media surrounding purchase strategies of carbon credits, we also had a wider conversation about the challenges in managing perception and how to ensure the quality and integrity of the carbon credits available.

It was a privilege to have Peter join us for our General Counsel roundtable, who provided valuable insights and knowledge. A huge thanks to all of our attendees too and to those who shared their experiences and contributed to a fascinating discussion.

Our market report and salary guide 2023/24 will be available to download shortly. For further information on the event or for assistance building out your legal team or making a move yourself please contact James Jones.

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