In many ways, carbon trading and carbon markets are not as complicated as many believe.
Explaining what carbon trading is, in fact, is surprisingly simple:
Carbon offset certifications are also easy to explain:
So, at the foundation, carbon trading/markets are not complicated.
What is complex/complicated is the governance of carbon markets.
As a result of the lack of consensus there is no single global carbon market but many “parallel markets operating under the same conceptual basis, but with different governance structures”.1 Many, many! Around 50 at my last count, based on the last count by the World Bank’s Carbon Pricing Dashboard.
So, simple in theory, complex in practice.