Climate change

ICC launches Carbon Council to drive greater liquidity in carbon markets

  • 22 April 2020

As part of its Earth Day 50th anniversary celebrations, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has launched an ambitious new climate action initiative – the ICC Carbon Council.

The overarching goal of the ICC Carbon Council is to work with key public and private sector partners to help create greater liquidity, transparency, accessibility and standardisation in carbon markets critical for funding coordinated global climate action. The Council’s inaugural meeting was held this week with major international firms participating, including BlackRock, BP, Macquarie Bank, RGE, Shell, Singapore Airlines, State Street, Temasek and others.

“We believe that business must lead in creating effective market-based mechanisms to help address the current and future threat of global warming,” said John W.H. Denton AO, Secretary General of ICC. “Even as much of the world grapples with the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, this milestone Earth Day is a reminder that we must not lose sight of the need for an inclusive, resilient and sustainable future for people and our planet.”

As the world’s largest business institution representing 45 million businesses in over 100 countries, ICC will act as global connector and convenor for carbon trade within its extensive network.  Other founding members of the Singapore-based Council include Perlin (acting as Council Secretariat and carbon asset supplier) and AirCarbon Exchange (as carbon asset trading platform).

Working to enable tipping point adoption for carbon trading, the Council will pave the way for a fresh new wave investment into carbon markets to provide economic support for vital carbon mitigation projects around the world.

“Carbon markets have grown five-fold in just two years but remain fragmented, opaque and illiquid. AirCarbon uses traditional commodity trading exchange architecture and pioneering blockchain technology to overcome the problems that hinder growth in carbon markets and enable the highly liquid trade of fungible carbon assets,” said William Pazos, COO of AirCarbon.

The Council has now opened applications for founding members to join across all sectors, inviting members from both traditional industries and burgeoning blockchain ecosystems. Founding members will be able to access zero trading fees on AirCarbon and potentially share in its top-line platform revenues if they meet minimum trade volumes.

Blockchain development firm Perlin will manage the day-to-day operations of the Council as Secretariat and coordinate the onboarding of new members, which will include players from both the carbon asset supply and demand sides. Perlin will also help source high-quality carbon asset supply for onboarding to the AirCarbon exchange.

“Working with the Council, Perlin is taking advantage of explosive growth in carbon markets and leading-edge blockchain infrastructure to overcome inefficiencies that currently cripple carbon trade. This will complement the Carbon DAO for project funding we are launching, which will provide unprecedented access to best-in-class carbon projects worldwide,” said Dorjee Sun, CEO of Perlin.

The Council is based in Singapore and developed under the ICC Centre of Future Trade established by ICC and Perlin last year with the support of the Singapore government.

We are happy to see this business-led initiative taking place here as it aligns with our vision for Singapore to become a major global hub for carbon financing,” said Satvinder Singh, Assistant CEO of Enterprise Singapore. “We hope that more companies will participate in this effort to support continued growth in sustainable investment.”

The Council will complement other climate initiatives undertaken by ICC, including the Chambers for Climate Coalition, which commits more than 2,000 chambers of commerce globally to taking ambitious climate action.