Colombia – a crude oil producer – is looking for a way to sell carbon-neutral oil.
Ecopetrol SA – the state-controlled oil driller – will offer 1 million barrels of oil, with future emissions offset credits through renewable energy projects throughout Colombia.
The overall oil industry isn’t ready to set net-zero goals. But, through technological advances, they could get there in time.
The carbon credit industry continues to grow as companies recognize its potential to improve the environment and generate economic growth. In February, Japan’s Index Corp sold gas offset by carbon credits. Occidental Petroleum Corp did so this year as well.
While many critics have often accused polluters of using the carbon offset industry to keep operations business-as-usual, the carbon marketplace has changed drastically.
Verification methods have improved, and the quality of offset projects has also improved. Even leaders at COP26 agreed that a global standard for the carbon marketplace should be put in place, which many expect will strengthen the carbon credit industry even more.
Each carbon credit equals one metric ton of carbon. So, when a carbon credit is bought, one metric ton of carbon is offset by green projects, such as enhanced agricultural practices or reforestation.
Depending on how this sale in Colombia goes, it is expected that Ecopetrol, SA will offer such deals regularly.
Fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas, and coal currently account for 80% of the world’s energy – and 89% of CO2 emissions. As crude oil begins the journey towards neutrality and then net-zero, the world will be in a much better place.