C4S – City Carbon Credit Cancellation Service

This week we are delighted to announce that C4S has been launched with Roger Cohen of C2Zerotry it out to get a certificate for avoided emissions, as above.

Receipt from C2Zero Order Number 0000099  
Payment to C2Zero £ 47.93
Tax (VAT) £ 9.59
Processing fee £ 1.85
Amount paid £ 59.37  

This article provides a bit more information and my launch text is set out below.

Remarks to: C4S launch with the Livery Climate Action Group, Drawing Rooms, Mansion House, Monday 4 March 2024 by The Rt Hon The Lord Mayor of London Alderman Professor Michael Mainelli

  • City’s work to reduce emissions and involvement in the development of emissions trading schemes
  • “Connect To Prosper”, role of the City in promoting innovative approaches to big challenges
  • Support for C4S, which gives businesses the ability to purchase carbon emission allowances from systems that meet the high standards of the UK ETS

Alderman. Ladies and Gentlemen.

For those who don’t know me, I’m Michael Mainelli, the 695th Lord Mayor of the City of London…the world’s oldest democratic workers’ and residents’ cooperative.

It is my great pleasure to welcome you to the mayoral residence, Mansion House, this afternoon, to celebrate the launch of an innovative new approach to tackling emissions from C2Zero.

I’ll be handing over to C2Zero’s CEO Roger Cohen, to say more about C4S – the City Carbon Credit Cancellation Service – in a moment. But I’d like to thank him and all at C2Zero for being here today.

My thanks, also, to the Australian Trade and Investment Commissioner for the United Kingdom and Ireland, Anastasia Nishnianidze for joining us…

…and our other speaker, Alderman Alison Gowman, who is Chair of the City’s Livery Climate Action Group.

Twenty-twenty four began with some disturbing news: the previous year was the hottest on record globally.

While progress has been made to reduce emissions across the world, they’re not coming down fast enough to meet the goal of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C.

New challenges produce new markets, and the issue of global emissions is no exception.

COP3 in Kyoto in 1997 led to the creation of a new market-based solution for emissions: carbon emissions trading markets, which compel large, high-emitting companies to purchase permits or allowances before polluting.

Two years later, the City Corporation was a founder member of the UK Emissions Trading Group, which played an important role in laying the foundations upon which the UK, and then EU, emission trading schemes were built.

During the nineties emissions trading led to the of the enormous reduction of “acid rain”. And, today, 23% of global carbon emissions are covered by a credible emissions trading market like the UK ETS.

According to LSEG, the value of traded global markets for carbon dioxide (CO2) permits reached a record 881 billion euros ($948.75 billion) in 2023.

In addition to these regulatory or “mandated” markets, we’ve also seen the emergence of a voluntary carbon market (VCM) where businesses and individuals can invest in environmental projects to offset their emissions.

While the VCM complements regulatory markets and enables firms of all sizes to compensate for their environmental impact, the market has been troubled by challenges surrounding both the acceptable use and integrity of carbon credits.

There is a tremendous difference in the prices between emission trading systems – where it’s around £50 to emit a tonne of carbon on the EU ETS – and the VCM, where it can be as low as £5 to sequester or remove a tonne.

In 2007, two well-meaning friends were discussing VCM prices they had paid…one to offset the emissions of a major event in the City, one to offset the emissions of his firm’s away week in Florida. 

The EU ETS price then was about £25 a tonne. One friend bragged to the other that he had paid about £1.50 a tonne while the other had paid £2 a tonne.

I pointed out to both that they should question the quality and wondered why they hadn’t considering a purchase of “real” carbon emission trading permits and then cancelling them. That’s when we realised this was not an option for small businesses.

My mayoral theme, “Connect to Prosper”, highlights the City’s role as a global solutions hub, so I’m very happy we’ve been able to gather today to highlight the work of an innovative organisation that’s tackling this thorny issue.

C2Zero’s C4S scheme gives climate-conscious businesses and individuals the ability to purchase carbon emission allowances from systems that meet the high standards of the UK ETS – which the City’s 24,000 SMEs would usually face big hurdles to participate in.

Each emissions allowance purchased and retired by C2Zero means one less allowance available for polluting: effectively “tightening the cap” for emissions worldwide and raising the price of carbon, while enabling a participating business to show their customers and competitors they’re serious about tackling climate change. 

Combining high standards with increased access for more firms, it has the potential to offer the best of both worlds.

C2Zero already offers ETS emissions allowance cancellations in Australia New Zealand, and I’m pleased they’ve identified an opportunity to “Connect To Prosper” here in the UK.

C2Zero is one of several organisations pioneering innovative solutions to the challenge of reducing emissions. Other innovations include Sustainability-Linked Bonds and Sovereign Sustainability-Linked Bonds. The Republic of Chile placed the first-ever SSLB in March 2022, and it’s expected other nations will follow suit.  

There’s no silver bullet for reducing emissions, but, as a place that has always embraced innovation, the City has an important role to play in promoting ground-breaking solutions to the world’s greatest challenge.

The City of London Corporation has been playing its part to reduce emissions for many years.

We were the first government body to introduce a clean air act in 1953 and we’re on track to reach net zero in our own operations by 2027, while supporting net zero for the whole Square Mile by 2040 and helping the City unlock its full potential as a one-stop-shop for sustainable finance.

And, since 2021, the Livery Climate Action Group has been doing fantastic work to help the City’s liveries and guilds manage their impact on climate change.

And I am now pleased to hand over to its Chair, Alderman Gowman, to tell us more…