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A6.4 mechanism and VCM: Stepping stones to a carbon removals market

Despite its eminence in the market, high-durability carbon dioxide removals (CDR) comprise only a tiny fraction of the total transacted volume. As a credit class, high-durability CDR comprises only 0.01% of total credits retired from major registries. Meanwhile, Article 6.4 (A6.4) of the Paris Agreement defined mitigation to include emission reduction and removal activities; hence, CDR will likely become essential under Article 6. As there are no broadly accepted international accounting rules for carbon removal, the A6.4 mechanism, being the successor to the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), has the potential to set market norms for the crediting market of CDR. While the voluntary carbon market (VCM) has been the main driver behind the novel CDR, the uptake of methodologies endorsed by the A6.4 mechanism will establish a precedent for the global standardisation of CDR activities, ensuring the trust of the market participants as a prerequisite to scale the market.

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