The Gold Standard is a standard for creating high-quality emission reductions projects in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) Joint Implementation (JI) and Voluntary Carbon Market. It was designed to ensure that carbon credits are not only real and verifiable but that they make measurable contributions to sustainable development worldwide. Its objective is to add branding, a label to existing and new Carbon Credits generated by projects which can then be bought and traded by countries that have a binding legal commitment according to the Kyoto Protocol.

The Gold Standard for CDM (GS CER) was developed in 2003 by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), SouthSouthNorth, and Helio International. The Voluntary Gold Standard (GS VER), a methodology for use within the voluntary carbon market, was launched in May 2006. Both were the result of an extensive 12-month workshop and web-based consultation process conducted by an independent Standards Advisory Board composed of NGOs, scientists, project developers and government representatives.

The Gold Standard is open to any non-government, community based organization especially those with an interest in the promotion of sustainable development or a focus on climate and energy issues. As of March 2009, 60 environmental and development non-profit organizations internationally officially endorse The Gold Standard. These organizations support The Gold Standard as an effective tool for creating high-quality emission reduction projects that promote sustainable development and benefit local communities.

To be eligible for Gold Standard Certification, a project must:

  1. Be an approved Renewable Energy Supply or End-use Energy Efficiency Improvement project type
  2. Be reducing one of the three eligible Green House Gases: Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Methane (CH4) and Nitrous Oxide (N2O)
  3. Not employ Official Development Assistance (ODA) under the condition that the credits coming out of the project are transferred to the donor country.
  4. Not be applying for other certifications, to ensure there is no double counting of Credits
  5. Demonstrate its ‘additionality’ by using the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) Large Scale Additionality Tool; and show that the project is not a ‘business-as-usual’ scenario
  6. Make a net-positive contribution to the economic, environmental and social welfare of the local population that hosts it (1)

Current Projects

Voluntary emission reduction projects that Rockcliffe is currently investing are all Gold Standard projects. The following projects are currently ones that we are either investigating or have actively participated in for all our VER product lines.

Sustainable Deployment of the LifeStraw Family in rural Kenya

Vestergaard Frandsen Group SA

Project Type: Energy Efficiency

Vestergaard Frandsen seeks to distribute over one million LifeStraw® Family units, serving over four million people, in rural Kenya. These units will treat contaminated drinking water, and reduce the demand for conventional water treatment through boiling water with non-renewable biomass. With the assistance of carbon finance, this project can be economically sustainable and provide a significant improvement in public health.

Akbük Wind Farm Project, Turkey

Ayen Enerji A. S.

Project Type: Wind

The Akbük Wind Farm Project involves the development of 31.5 MW onshore wind farm in the region of Aydýn Province, Didim District in Turkey. grid. An estimated 105 GWh/year will be produced by the project activity and delivered to the national grid.

Ceará Renewable Energy Bundled Project

Sustainable Carbon – Projetos Ambientais LTDA

Project Type: Biomass

The project activity is the bundled project of five red ceramic factories belonging to Grupo Tavares, a family business that owns several ceramic factories in the State of Ceará, Brazil. The following ceramic factories are included in this project: Antônio Ceramic, Ceará Ceramic, Ceagra Ceramic, Eliane Ceramic and Santa Rita Ceramic. The project includes fuel switching and energy efficiency measures that will reduce the greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions through the substitution of non-renewable biomass for renewable biomasses to generate thermal energy.


This article uses material from the Wikipedia article “CDM Gold Standard”, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.