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State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets 2013

Maneuvering the Mosaic

By Molly Peters-Stanley, Daphne Yin
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30 May 2013 | Washington, D.C. | Voluntary demand for carbon offsetting grew 4% in 2012, when buyers committed more than $523 million to offset 101 million metric tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions. Private sector buyers flocked to offsets earned by planting trees, saving tropical forests, or distributing clean cookstoves in the developing world, according to this year’s State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets report, released by Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace this week in Barcelona, Spain.

The European private sector, including regulated energy utilities, was the market’s biggest voluntary buyer – seeing demand grow 34% to 43.4 million tonnes of offsets even in the face of significant challenges to Europe’s mandatory carbon market.

Across the pond, United States-based corporations, ranging from The Walt Disney Company to Chevrolet, offset more emissions than buyers in any other single country at 28.7 million tonnes. A little over a third of offsets purchased by US buyers (9.7 million tonnes) were obtained for future use in California’s emerging cap-and-trade program.


Press Release Executive Summary Full Report
English [PDF, 208 KB]
Spanish [PDF, 328 KB]
French [PDF, 361 KB]
Maneuvering the Mosaic: Executive Summary
[PDF, 5,193 KB – English]

Maniobrando el Mosaico: Resumen Ejecutivo
[PDF, Español]

Maneuvering the Mosaic:
Full Report

[PDF, 12MB]
Full Report by Chapter

Chapter 1: Market Overview
[PDF, 1,649 KB]

Chapter 2: Offset Origins
[PDF, 1,672 KB]
Chapter 3: Market Infrastructure
[PDF, 1,955 KB]
Chapter 4: Details of the Deals
[PDF, 2,016 KB]
Chapter 5: Regional Market Deep Dive
[PDF, 3,044 KB]
Chapter 6: Projections
[PDF, 2,054 KB]
[PDF, 1,670 KB]
Graphs from the Report

All graphs[PDF, 10,551 KB]




Figure: “Flow of Transacted Volumes by Offset Supplier and Buyer Region, OTC 2012”



Dependent Documents

Publication Thumbnail

Maniobrando el Mosaico

El Estado de los Mercados Volunarios de Carbono 2013 - Resumen Ejecutivo

By Molly Peters-Stanley, Daphne Yin