ACR Approved by ICAO Council for 2024-2026 Compliance Period



March 31, 2023

ACR -- together with fellow Winrock enterprise Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART) -- are the first two crediting programs approved to supply credits for first phase of CORSIA.

LITTLE ROCK, March 31, 2023 – The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Council, the UN’s main aviation body, has approved the American Carbon Registry (ACR) to supply carbon credits for the first phase of CORSIA, which commences in 2024.

Earlier this week, ACR was notified by the ICAO Council that it had been approved to supply CORSIA-eligible emissions units for the 2024-2026 compliance period. Eligible credits include those issued to activities that started their first crediting period on or after January 1, 2016 and that represent emissions reductions that occurred from January 2021 through December 2026.

ACR is once again one of the first crediting programs to receive approval to supply credits for a new phase of CORSIA. In this case, it is one of the first two crediting programs to receive approval for the 2024-2026 compliance period, the other being the Architecture for REDD+ Transactions (ART); both are enterprises of Winrock International. In 2021, ACR and ART were the first crediting programmes to be approved to offer post-2020 vintage credits for CORSIA’s 2021-2023 pilot phase.

“We are proud that ACR has once again successfully completed a thorough review of our program requirements and oversight,” said Mary Grady, Executive Director of ACR. “Ensuring carbon market integrity is paramount to our mission, and this this approval reflects our commitment to ensure our procedures continue to improve and evolve in line with Paris Agreement rules alongside increased scrutiny, oversight and guidance in the marketplace.”

ICAO is a specialized agency of the United Nations that manages the standards that govern international aviation. In 2016, ICAO approved the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) as a global market-based mechanism to achieve carbon-neutral growth in international aviation starting in 2020. CORSIA is expected to reduce or offset between 2.5 and 4 billion tons of CO2-e through 2035.

Initially approved by ICAO in 2020 to supply eligible pre-2020 ACR-issued credits for the 2021-2023 pilot phase, ICAO expanded ACR’s eligibility in 2021 to supply post-2020 credits for use in the pilot phase. This updated approval for Paris Agreement-aligned credits, which ACR was the first to receive, was based on ACR’s ability to demonstrate that it would ensure avoidance of double counting of credits used for CORSIA with mitigation targets under the Paris Agreement. In the context of climate change mitigation, double counting describes situations where a single greenhouse gas emission reduction or removal is used more than once to demonstrate compliance with mitigation targets.

This latest approval for CORSIA’s first phase comes alongside the release by the Integrity Council for the Voluntary Carbon Market (ICVCM) of its Core Carbon Principles (CCPs), a set of fundamental principles for high-quality carbon credits. ICVCM’s requirements for crediting programs, such as ACR, have been streamlined for ICAO-approved programs to build on existing CORSIA requirements, with additional criteria around effective governance, credit tracking, transparency and robust, independent third-party validation and verification.

“ACR looks forward to continuing to be at the vanguard of market innovation and impact, and to working with the broad range of stakeholders who share our desire to create confidence in the environmental and scientific integrity of high quality carbon credits in order to accelerate transformational climate action,” Grady said.