Understanding Carbon Offsets

SocialCarbon Standard

The SocialCarbon Standard was developed by the Ecológica Institute (Brazil) in 1998. It is a methodology that focuses on enhancing co-benefits such as biodiversity and active participation of local communities, similar to the CCBS. It does not quantify or verify carbon credits and is therefore usually used in conjunction with another program, such as the VCS. The project registry for SocialCarbon is available online.

Program documents outline the methodology, which follows the basic structure of the Sustainable Livelihoods Approach (SLA) and utilizes the Sustainability Hexagon tool. If the projects demonstrate improvement in the six realms of the hexagon: carbon, biodiversity, social, financial, human, and natural aspects the SocialCarbon certificate is granted. Project documents to implement these measurement and monitoring practices can be found here.

Standard Authority and Administrative Bodies

The Ecológica Institute is in charge of accrediting other organizations who wish to use the SocialCarbon Standard.

Auditors of SocialCarbon Standard projects are called Certifying Entities. A list of SocialCarbon Standard approved auditors can be found here.

Regional Scope

The SocialCarbon Standard is internationally applicable.

Recognition of Other Standards/ Linkage with Other Trading Systems

Because the SocialCarbon Standard is a methodology for monitoring the co-benefits of crediting projects and does not verify emissions reductions it is usually used in conjunction with another program, such as the VCS or the CDM. VCS and SocialCarbon have jointly developed a guidance document and templates for project developers looking to apply both standards to an crediting project.