Carbon Integrity Explorer
An open access platform that provides information on Australian carbon offset projects.
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What makes a high integrity carbon project?

High integrity carbon offset projects should result in real and additional reductions in carbon emissions. When carbon offset projects lack integrity, they can increase carbon emissions.

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About Australian Carbon OffSETS

Individual project integrity

Australia’s carbon offset projects must be undertaken in accordance with a specified set of rules known as ‘methods’.

By law, methods are supposed to meet six offsets integrity standards that are intended to ensure credited abatement is real and additional. These include:

  • that the methods should result in carbon abatement that is unlikely to occur in the ordinary course of events (i.e. without the incentive provided by the scheme);
  • that the methods should be supported by clear and convincing evidence; and
  • all estimates, projections and assumptions in the methods should be conservative.

Australia’s carbon offset scheme is currently dominated by three types of offset projects: human-induced regeneration, landfill gas, and avoided deforestation in Western New South Wales.

  • Human-induced regeneration projects

    These projects account for almost 30% of issued Australian carbon credit units (ACCUs).

    Learn more about human-induced regeneration
  • Landfill gas projects

    These projects account for approximately 27% of issued ACCUs.

  • Avoided deforestation projects in Western New South Wales

    These projects account for approximately 20% of issued ACCUs.

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How will amendments to the Safeguard Mechanism alter the integrity and use of carbon credits?

In March 2023, amendments were made to the Safeguard Mechanism to convert it from a regulatory scheme that was designed to prevent increases in emissions into a carbon pricing scheme that reduces emissions. Despite claims to the contrary, the deal between the Government and Australian Greens over the Safeguard legislation will not fix the problems with Australia’s carbon market. The deal did not place restrictions on the use of low integrity carbon credits or ensure the integrity issues with the offset scheme are addressed. Due to this, low integrity carbon projects will undermine the effectiveness of the Safeguard Mechanism in reducing emissions.

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Who we are

The Carbon Integrity Explorer is an initiative of the Centre for Environment and Integrity. It was made possible by a group of non-partisan public interest researchers who care about the integrity of the carbon offset market.

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Latest news

August 3, 2023

Leading rangeland ecologist denounces misuse of his research to support HIR projects

Professor David Eldridge, a former Senior Principal Research Scientist at the New South Wales Office of Environment and Heritage and adjunct Professor in the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of New South Wales, has denounced the misuse of his work by the Clean Energy Regulator and the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water.
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July 17, 2023

Response to government criticism of Carbon Integrity Explorer

Academics from the ANU and UNSW have published a paper responding to false and misleading criticisms of the method used to generate indicative risk ratings for projects on the Carbon Integrity Explorer. These criticisms were made by both the Clean Energy Regulator and the Commonwealth Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water.
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August 3, 2023

Summary results released

Academics from the ANU and UNSW have released summary results from an analysis of 192 human-induced regeneration (HIR) projects, using recently released carbon estimation area (CEA) data and the Carbon Integrity Explorer. The results of the analysis show that, across the 3.4 million hectares where even-aged native forests are supposedly regenerating, forest cover only increased by 1.6% to 2021.
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Use our interactive explorer to find and extract the information you need to learn about the integrity of human-induced regeneration projects.
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