Capital markets News

World Bank’s IFC backs tokenized carbon credit fund

forest carbon credits sustainability

Today the World Bank’s International Financial Corporation (IFC) announced it is part of a group launching the Carbon Opportunities Fund that aims to tokenize high-quality carbon credits using the Chia public blockchain. 

The Fund also includes two other non-profit fintechs, Aspiration, which has a large retail customer base for savings and investment. Cultivo uses proprietary technology to source land for regeneration projects. These two firms will drive the fund’s strategy.

“This new partnership will foster the standardization of carbon credits generated in emerging markets and help mitigate climate change,” said Paulo de Bolle, Global Director, Financial Institutions Group, IFC. 

“Nature-based solutions can deliver up to 40% of the carbon removal required to combat the climate crisis. This new framework that will use new blockchain technologies is an innovative way for capital markets to fully engage in carbon credit trading in a transparent, secure, fair, and beneficial manner.”

Chia’s blockchain avoids the energy wasteful Proof of Work used by bitcoin and instead uses Proof of Space and Time. The blockchain was founded by Bram Cohen, the inventor of BitTorrent, and is novel in several other ways. For example, the network is backed by a for-profit company that plans to do an IPO at some point.

The Carbon Opportunities Fund says the carbon credits will be certified by international standards bodies. One of those, Verra, is currently doing a consultation on how to address the tokenization of carbon credits, as it’s not happy with how crypto tokenization has been handled to date.

Enterprise-oriented tokenization solutions for carbon credits include Deutsche Boerse-backed AirCarbon Exchange and SIX-backed ClimateTrade. Two projects founded by institutions include Carbonplace, which includes BNP Paribas, Stanchart and UBS, and Singapore’s CIX from DBS, SGX, Stanchart and Temasek. Carbonplace and CIX are collaborating.

Meanwhile, enterprise-governed public DLT Hedera has a $100 million DLT fund for sustainability. 

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