Discussion paper

The Climate Change Authority (the Authority) is an independent statutory agency, established to provide expert, evidence-based advice on Australia’s climate change policy.

The Authority is conducting a review of international carbon markets in the context of the Paris Agreement, at the request of the Federal Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Angus Taylor, (see Appendix 1 for the written request). The review will provide advice on the principles and criteria to apply to the future use of international offsets under the government’s Climate Active program. The advice will also inform the development of Australia’s Indo-Pacific Carbon Offsets Scheme (IPCOS), and may be relevant to other policies and programs, and for accounting for Australia’s emission reduction targets.

A review of the criteria for international offsets is timely. International carbon markets are evolving rapidly as efforts to implement the Paris Agreement accelerate, including to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Significantly, countries reached agreement on the rules for international carbon markets under the Paris Agreement at the United Nations climate conference in November 2021 (COP26).

Demand for high-quality offsets is growing rapidly in Australia as an increasing number of businesses commit to net zero by 2050 and interim emission reduction targets. These commitments, and the action taken to meet them, are key to Australia’s ability to meet its national 2030 emissions reduction target and net zero by 2050 target.


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