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What do we mean by 'the best certification'?

Updated: Feb 15

We're proud to support the very best environmental projects around. But what makes a project effective and people and the planet alike? And what are our criteria for choosing a project?

Best certifications for Club Leaf projects
Club Leaf choose climate projects with the best certification

Let's zoom in on how our projects are a force for good.

At Club Leaf, we're committed to only supporting the very best possible people and planet projects out there. By that, we mean projects that are highly effective in protecting what we have, restoring what we can, and building a sustainable, low-carbon future for everyone. To achieve this, we need the very best certification out there too.

Certification helps to make sure that projects make real, additional and unique emissions reductions. We work with the best two: the Gold Standard and the Verified Carbon Standard supported by research from the Stockholm Environment Institute - in addition to conducting our own due diligence.

Gold Standard

The Gold Standard, which was established in 2003 by WWF and other international NGOs including the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and Fairtrade, is one of the most rigorous industry-led certification standards for carbon offset projects on the planet.

Why is it so great? Well, the Gold Standard looks beyond carbon alone and makes sure that each project delivers impact on a minimum of 3 UN Sustainable Development Goals - always putting local people at the heart of decisions.

That’s what we love about the Gold Standard. Each and every project must contribute positively to local communities and ecosystems. So far, they’ve already supported over 2000 projects in more than 80 countries and reduced [over 173 million tons of CO2e](

Verified Carbon Standard

Established in 2006 by The Climate Group (alongside the International Emissions Trading Association, World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and the World Economic Forum Global Greenhouse Register, VCS projects must follow a rigorous assessment process in order to certify their emissions reductions. After certification, the certified projects can be traded on the market as what's called Verified Carbon Units (VCS).

VCS projects cover several sectors such as renewable energy generation projects, wind and hydroelectric power, forest protection and avoidance of deforestation. In total, more than 1,700 projects have reduced or removed more than 630 million tons of CO2e from the atmosphere.

While the Verified Carbon Standard itself only focuses on greenhouse gas emissions reduction, they have also developed a range of additional certification that helps to identify which projects have additional environmental and social benefits. In particular, we support projects that have the additional Climate, Community & Biodiversity (CCB) Standard and Sustainable Development Verified Impact Standard

Want to know more about how we select our projects? Read more here:

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