Supported by The Climate Center

SB 1036 (Limón) Voluntary Carbon Offsets

California State Capitol. Photo by Canva.

SB 1036 will penalize carbon offset marketers for misrepresenting the climate benefits of the offsets that they are selling. Under existing law, it is unlawful for a person to make an untruthful, deceptive, or misleading environmental marketing claim, whether explicit or implied.

This bill would make it unlawful for a person to certify or issue a voluntary carbon offset, to maintain on a registry a voluntary carbon offset, or to market, make available or offer for sale, or sell an offset, if the person knows, or should know, that the greenhouse gas reductions or greenhouse gas removal enhancements of the offset project related to the voluntary carbon offset are unlikely to be quantifiable, real, and additional.

This bill would extend California’s False Advertising Law to cover voluntary carbon offsets amid heightened scrutiny of dubious projects sold to help buyers reduce their emissions. It is identical to legislation that Governor Newsom vetoed last year, although no lawmakers voted against it and no organization formally opposed the measure.

Committee Location: (Updated 4/1/24) Senate Judiciary Committee on April 9.

Bill author