Offset protocols

An offset protocol is a set of instructions on how to quantify greenhouse gas emission reductions from a project.  The measurement, monitoring and reporting requirements for B.C.’s protocols follow ISO 14064-2 standards for Quantification, Monitoring, and Reporting of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions or Removal Enhancements. 

Only protocols that have been established under GGIRCA can be used to prepare a proposed project. 

On this page:

Offset protocol policy

B.C.’s Offset Protocol Policy (OPP) lays out a set of straightforward steps for the development and maintenance of B.C.’s offset protocols. It is designed to increase transparency and support development of a diverse suite of protocols that deliver real, quantifiable, verifiable, permanent, and additional emissions reductions and/or removals in B.C.

This document outlines government’s policy on how B.C. offset protocols will be: 

  • Identified and prioritized for development
  • Developed
  • Periodically reviewed
  • Amended or deactivated

Approved protocols

  • Fuel Switch Protocol:  Applicable to projects that reduce emissions through energy conservation, energy efficiency and switching to lower carbon fuels
  • Methane from Organic Waste Protocol: Applicable to projects that reduce methane emissions through landfill gas management or anaerobic digestion of organic wastes

In development

Development of new protocols will focus on project types that advance B.C.’s climate goals and support a transition to a low carbon economy. 

Proposed protocol development ideas should align with the criteria for prioritization outlined in the Offset Protocol Policy (PDF, 378KB)

Project types under development 

In keeping with the development principles outlined in the OPP, the following project types have been identified as priorities: 

  • Forest Carbon Offset Protocol (FCOP), includes: 
    • Afforestation/Reforestation​ 
    • Conservation/Improved forest management​ 
    • Avoided conversion 

Posted for 60-day public consultation from March 30, 2021 to May 31, 2021 

Prior to the director’s approval, all draft protocols and guidance documents are posted for a public review and comment period. Please send any comments to GHGregulator@gov.bc.ca. 

Under review

Approved protocols may be reviewed to assess whether they continue to be consistent with GGIRCA and serve the shared interests of the offset program and project owners.

Changes in the regulatory climate as well as new developments in the scientific literature and quantification best practices will be monitored to identify any risks or issues that may arise that warrant a protocol review. The process of reviewing a protocol is outlined in the Offset Protocol Policy.

Notice of the decision to review a protocol will be posted online and accompanied by a discussion document outlining the rationale for the review.

Project developers are strongly cautioned against developing a new offset project using a protocol that is under review. If a project is developed using a protocol under review, it will assume the risk of being non-compliant with a reviewed and/or updated protocol.