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Assessing the effectiveness of Voluntary Carbon Market Grievance Mechanisms

Publication Overview

Publication Date: June 2024

– What are grievance mechanisms?

– Why are grievance mechanisms needed in the carbon markets context?

– How are grievance mechanisms from key VCM standards performing?

Perspectives new study that assesses the grievance mechanisms of CAR, Verra, ACR and ART based on the recent developments to their grievance mechanism procedures. Our 2024 review found improvements in the CAR, Verra and ACR grievance processes as well as some relevant positive provisions in the ART mechanism. Most standards now feature detailed processes with clear phases and timeframes.

However, our 2024 review highlights ongoing challenges. Most of the standards still need to improve the visibility and accessibility of the mechanisms, and some of the standards have conditions that might restrict access to their grievance processes. Additionally, all programms must work on ensuring the independence of the mechanism.

As part of this study, we also delve into the first grievance lodged under ART’s complaint mechanism by the Amerindian Peoples’ Association (APA) in Guyana, a case that was dismissed due to formal reasons without addressing key substantive issues raised by APA. This case study starkly illustrates, among other aspects, the critical need for an effective grievance process from the outset of grievance submission.

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