The International Emissions Trading Association launches its Asia hub in Singapore

The Republic leads the regional drive on decarbonisation and carbon market initiatives with the opening of IETA’s Asia office.

Singapore is well-placed to capture growth opportunities and is home to more than 70 organisations providing carbon services.
Singapore is well-placed to capture growth opportunities and is home to more than 70 organisations providing carbon services. Photo Credit: IETA

Singapore has reached a significant decarbonisation milestone with the establishment of the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA)’s Asia hub in the Republic.

The association has more than 300 members across the globe, and aims to support the development of high-integrity carbon markets, including mandatory emissions trading schemes, international markets under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, and global voluntary carbon markets.

Dirk Forrister, president and CEO, IETA, said: “Across the Asia Pacific region, we see a growing interest and adoption in market-based solutions, such as the implementation of emissions trading schemes and activity in voluntary carbon markets. If these instruments are effectively utilised, they will facilitate countries and companies meeting their net zero ambitions sooner and at lower cost.

“Singapore is leading the charge on decarbonisation and the establishment of regional carbon market initiatives, and the opening of our Asia office here represents a natural step for IETA as we look to work even closer with partners and key stakeholders in the region.”

CAD Trust

One of the association’s major initiatives last year was its collaboration with the World Bank and the Singapore government, where it launched the Climate Action Data (CAD) Trust. This aggregates and harmonises all independent and national carbon registry data through a blockchain-based metadata layer to enhance transparent accounting in line with Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. By creating a decentralised record of carbon market activity, it aims to avoid double counting, increase trust in carbon credit data, and build confidence in carbon markets.

The opening of IETA’s Asia office in Singapore comes around six months after IETA’s Asia Climate Summit last year, where the launch of CAD Trust as an independent entity domiciled in Singapore was announced.

IETA’s spokesperson said: “Carbon markets can help facilitate the much-needed finance towards climate mitigation activities, such as renewable energy development, waste management, sustainable cookstoves, improved agricultural practices and forest conservation in the region. In addition, these activities can produce significant co-benefits for the economy and local communities, including improved air and water quality, education, biodiversity protection and sustainable livelihoods.”

The Singapore edge

As a major hub for carbon services and trading in Asia Pacific, Singapore is well-placed to catch growth opportunities in this space and already has more than 70 organisations providing carbon services.

To date, IETA has nearly 100 members represented in Singapore, and the opening of IETA’s Asia office will allow IETA to engage with member companies based in Singapore and throughout the region.

A collective voice

IETA’s core objective is to build robust policy and market frameworks for reducing Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) at the least cost to businesses and consumers. According to the spokesperson, IETA has a proven track record as a multi-sector business champion, excelling in high-integrity carbon market design and accounting. As a result, IETA members stand at the forefront of global policy evolution and innovation.

Comprising more than 300 member companies, IETA includes world-renowned leaders in various sectors such as power, oil and gas, industry (cement, aluminium, chemical, mining, etc.), agriculture, as well as prominent firms in GHG data verification and certification, brokering and trading, legal, finance, technology, and consulting businesses.

“With deep relationships across the world’s key policy centres and commercial arenas, IETA is the collective voice for the full range of businesses involved in carbon markets and carbon management worldwide,” the spokesperson added.

IETA’s expertise

IETA has deep domain expertise in carbon market policies and operations, and has been an accredited observer to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) for over 20 years. Most recently, it has been in frequent engagement on advocacy and design support of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement and its recently adopted Rulebook at COP26. The organisation has also contributed policy proposals dating to Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation programmes.

Busy Q4 2023

In the following months, the association will participate in and organise several high-level events to help expand high-integrity carbon markets in Asia Pacific and internationally. This includes:

· the Article 6.4 Supervisory Body meeting in Singapore, September;

· the Carbon Markets Institute conference in Sydney, September;

· the India Climate Policy and Business Conclave in Delhi, September;

· the Asia-Pacific Climate Summit in Tokyo, Japan, October;

· the Digital Carbon Expo in Bali, Indonesia, November;

· the Regional Climate Week in Johor, Malaysia, November;

· the International UNFCCC negotiations at COP28 in Dubai, November and December

Besides these high-level events, IETA will bring together business members in working groups and meetings throughout the year, covering Japan, China, Australia and New Zealand, India, Singapore, and Indonesia.