09 12 2023 -
Monash Pavilion, COP28 Blue Zone
The use of carbon offsets by Australian companies to meet their compliance obligations under Australia’s revised Safeguard Mechanism and to meet voluntary net-zero targets is increasingly under scrutiny. The integrity of Australian offsets has been widely questioned, prompting some reform and ongoing debate. Ensuring international offsets represent real, additional, and permanent emissions reduction or sequestration is even more challenging, with many international offset certifiers facing serious criticism and backlash following the exposure of flawed offset projects. Green Lab academics will facilitate a discussion between experts from the Australian government, from industry and from civil society to help clear the air on offsets. Through this discussion we will explore what we currently know about how Australian companies are using carbon offsets to meet voluntary targets, the extent to which they are allowed to use offsets to meet compliance obligations, and what we need to do to ensure that offsets used by Australian companies represent real emissions reductions on the pathway to net zero and do not undermine other efforts to reduce corporate emissions.