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Project developers now listed on our platform

  • Rose Slater
    Development Engagement Manager
  • George Carruthers
    Senior Product Manager

Here are some key takeaways

  • Identifying the correct organisation responsible for a carbon project can be difficult.

  • Developer information is not presented in a standardised way across registries or between documents. Multiple organisations might be involved in a single project, each responsible for a different function.

  • As a first step to tackle this issue, we are adding developer identifiers to our platform. In the first iteration of this feature, we list the developer as presented in the most recent publicly available project design document (PDD), monitoring report or verification report.

Understanding who developed a carbon project allows for the assessment of a developer's historical performance and wider portfolio, as well as providing a proxy for future project success. Further, it can streamline the process of contacting the entity responsible for rated credits. 

Unfortunately, navigating project documents to identify the correct developer is not always straightforward, particularly for those new to the voluntary carbon market. Projects’ registry pages are often outdated, and design documents do not follow a standard format, making it difficult to systematically identify the correct stakeholders. In many instances, documents will list several entities involved with the project which often change over the course of a project’s monitoring periods.

The situation is not helped by the variety of responsibilities a developer can have, and which they may outsource to other organisations. Often, the entity listed first in the documents is referred to as the 'project proponent' who might be a local entity that owns the land or facility where the project is taking place. In some cases the project proponent may not be the best point of contact in relation to the carbon aspects of the project, as they may have been onboarded by another company that wishes to develop a project on their property.

From the information we've collected during the process of rating 359 projects (at the time of publication), and aiming to make contact with the project developer for each one, it’s clear that the task of mapping out project stakeholders can be over complicated and lack transparency.

As in other markets, stakeholders want to understand potential risks associated with the organisation responsible for delivering on their investment. The difficulty of finding and interpreting this information may inhibit the due diligence process and increase the risk associated with investing in that carbon project, due to the lack of transparency around who is responsible. Mapping the entities involved in a project is also key to understanding benefit sharing, which is important to assessing the impact of carbon finance.

Our engagement with developers has allowed us to classify the roles of project developers into four main groups. The organisation responsible for a project should fall into one or more of the following:

  • Project coordinator 

This role is associated with activities including but not limited to: project scouting/project origination (seeking out projects to invest in), onboarding the project/landowner, seeking out the project investor(s), and hiring technical consultants.

  • Investor

This role is associated with activities including but not limited to: financing the project, originating projects, and hiring a project coordinator.

  • Technical consultant

This role is associated with activities including but not limited to: baseline setting, project registration, project design document (PDD) write-up, certification and compliance, monitoring and reporting (monitoring report write-up), and technical modelling.

  • Implementation agent

This role is associated with activities including but not limited to: ownership of land/facility/property rights (distinct from carbon assets), project operation, and measurement of project activity for monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV).

Recognising the absence of consistent, readily available information on who a project developer is in the market today, BeZero has introduced project developer identifiers to the platform. This tool will help users further understand the risks to a given project’s performance and credit quality through greater transparency on the organisation responsible for the project and their wider portfolio. Developers will also benefit from improved buyside exposure and the ability to better assess the competitive landscape.

Each project will have a project developer listed on the project page, and platform users can filter projects by developer on the project list. The developer listed on our platform will be the one stated in the most recent publicly-available project documentation reviewed by BeZero. 

Platform users can also use the filter menu on the analytics page to compare a specific developer's performance to the wider selection of BeZero-rated projects, allowing you to understand ratings, risk and geographical distribution of their projects. Users can also build portfolios based on specific developers.

We are working on bringing more information to the platform soon that will identify which entity plays which role in a project when multiple actors are involved. 

By providing this information on the platform, BeZero is both expediting and simplifying the task of understanding who is involved in a project. 

If you would like to learn more about our project developer engagement efforts, or need a refresher on our platform features, reach out to commercial@bezerocarbon.com