MRV in carbon markets has caused a lot of buzz. It's reaching wide and having applications in many industries such as climate and agriculture, through to ESG. We're here to break down what Monitoring, Reporting, and Verification means in the context of carbon projects. So, let's dig into that a bit!
Measurement is all about drawing a comparison. It involves sizing up the emissions we'd expect to see if the project didn't exist and pitting them against the actual emissions when the project is up and running. It's a before-and-after scenario that helps us understand the real impact of the project on our environment. Reporting refers to the need to submit data and findings to a third-party registry to have credits issued to them. Verification is the requirement to have verifiers, auditors, and registries cross-reference findings by proponents. Broadly, it ensures that everything checks out.
Over time, there has been a significant push towards digitising MRV technologies and processes – deserving of an acronym DMRV (Digital MRV). In short, it is the use of tech to collect various data streams required across the methodological spectrum that is the carbon market. In the wake of negative press around greenwashing, which has stirred up so much of a reaction that greenhushing has become the latest term, there is more demand for provability. This is a significant driver towards technologies and processes that offer greater transparency and credibility, like DMRV. Its role in accurately monitoring, reporting, and verifying carbon projects has never been more relevant or essential.
Registries, the entities responsible for issuing and certifying credits, are engaging DMRV for its significant potential to improve transparency, integrity, and industry growth. Take Verra, for example. This year, their pilot program was formed to work with tech providers to develop robust and reliable DMRV technologies. And they're not alone - Gold Standard (alongside sustainCERT) has the same ambitious goal with similar programs.
Why does this matter? MRV, especially in its digital form, is vital to unlocking rich data across the carbon credit lifecycle. From creation, through issuance and trading, to the eventual retirement process, DMRV paves the way for increased efficiency and accuracy of data for use across the whole market landscape.
As we follow the evolution of MRV, it's hard not to be excited about the profound impacts it will continue to have on carbon markets. Follow us on this journey as we explore technology that will help create a more efficient and transparent industry.