EU Establishes New Scheme for Carbon Removal Certification

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  • Certification framework to boost high-quality carbon removals and counter greenwashing
  • New rules will enable farmers to get paid to remove carbon
  • Public EU registry to ensure transparency

The law will set up an EU certification framework for carbon removals to boost their uptake and help achieve EU climate neutrality by 2050.

Parliament on Wednesday adopted the provisional political agreement with EU countries on a new voluntary certification framework for carbon removals, with 441 votes in favour, 139 against and 41 abstentions.

The legislation covers different types of carbon removals, namely permanent carbon storage through industrial technologies, carbon storage in long-lasting products and carbon farming. It aims to boost their use and improve the EU’s capacity to quantify, monitor and verify such activities in order to counter greenwashing.

After the vote, rapporteur Lídia Pereira (EPP, PT) said: “We delivered! I am very happy that the European Parliament has given its final green light to the Carbon Removal Certification Framework. I look forward to a future in which those who actively remove and store carbon get a proper incentive to do it. I am also thrilled to see that farmers can have an extra revenue stream for all their efforts! The Parliament was, once again, on the right side of history!

The law now also has to be adopted by Council, before being published in the EU Official Journal and entering into force 20 days later.

In April 2023, Parliament adopted a resolution on Sustainable carbon cycles saying that while the EU must always prioritise swift and predictable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, carbon removals must play a growing role in achieving EU climate neutrality by 2050 to balance out emissions that cannot be eliminated.

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This legislation responds to citizens’ expectations concerning climate change and the environment as expressed in proposal 1(5) of the conclusions of the Conference on the Future of Europe where they call for the introduction of “a certification of carbon removals, based on robust, solid and transparent carbon accounting”.