High quality carbon credits are essential for the Voluntary Carbon Market
We at Callirius are convinced that ensuring high-quality carbon credits and carbon projects is of utmost importance. At the moment, many projects are of questionable quality and the projects often don’t deliver what they promise. They pose potential reputational risks for companies that counterbalance their unabated emissions and financial risks for investors that acquire carbon credits.
This situation not only damages companies’ development but also damages our planet since it deters companies and investors from supporting carbon removal projects. Also, it is a welcome excuse for those companies that are unwilling to spend money on climate solutions not to do so.
To overcome this counterproductive situation, we have made it our mission to establish a platform for high-quality carbon credits. A platform that customers can trust. Apart from mere carbon removal, we also focus on the various co-benefits, summarized under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To further establish trust, Callirius only operates in countries with appropriate political circumstances, where projects are traceable and monitorable.
How do we ensure the high quality of our credits while remaining competitive enough to guarantee fair prices?
The answer is “Artificial intelligence” (AI) and our proprietary quality engine FACTS.
In the first step, we gather as much information on existing projects as possible. This includes data from the registries, project documents, but also other information sources, such as satellite data or press reports. We use – where needed – machine learning to gather this data and process it in a structured way. All of this data will later be used by the AI to judge whether a project is high-quality or not.
But what does quality mean for Callirius and how does FACTS, our AI engine, learn about this?
At Callirius, we follow a rigorous quality approach, which goes far beyond the rules that the different registries set for the issuance of carbon credits. It is based on the integrity standards set by the Integrity Council for the Voluntary Carbon Market (ICVCM) and includes additional criteria, such as biodiversity and community wellbeing. More details about our quality approach can be found here.
To teach FACTS to apply this quality standard we have manually applied it to a subset of carbon projects and rated these accordingly. Out of this subset, the AI algorithm can learn to find criteria that indicate the quality of a project without manual input.
This output is used as a first filter, which helps us sort out the projects which do not fulfill our quality criteria. This gives our team the capacity and time to personally assess the projects that pass this first automated test. No project is allowed to enter our platform without in-depth due diligence by one of our climate solutions experts.
The outcome from these personal due diligence processes is then fed back into the AI algorithm, further increasing the data set from which it can learn. The quality of the automated process is thus improving continuously over time.
With this double-checking process, we can assure that high-quality standards are applied to each project on our platform.
But we do not stop here. It is one thing to allow only high-quality projects access to the platform. Yet another thing to ensure that these projects are also continuing to deliver on their promises. We thus continue to monitor the quality of all projects by updating all relevant information as they are becoming available. Again, this includes official project information as well as relevant secondary information such as satellite image series, which we use for nature-based projects to check the status of the forest and if it develops in line with the projections. Again, to make this process as efficient as possible, we use AI to detect unplanned deforestation or lack of progress in afforestation projects.
All of this helps Callirius develop a platform for high-quality voluntary carbon credits, that enterprises and investors can trust.