Gold Standard: Standards Setting Work Plan 2018

Gold Standard:  Standards Setting Workplan

Gold Standard’s vision is ‘climate security and sustainable development for all.’ We believe that this is only possible if impact quantification and certification become mainstream. To help drive this transformation, Gold Standard is seeking full membership in ISEAL, the global association for credible sustainability standards, to strengthen our credentials as the trusted provider for quantifying, certifying and maximising impact toward the SDGs, and to be able to scale to certify the broad range of activities and impacts that are possible under Gold Standard for the Global Goals.


Following the ISEAL Alliance “Setting Social and Environmental Standards” Code of Best Practice, we are sharing with our stakeholders our work plan to update Gold Standard for the Global Goals and launch supporting initiatives. This includes any requirements, methodologies, frameworks, tools or supporting programmes to help accelerate progress toward climate security and sustainable development. These fall within four applications of Gold Standard for the Global Goals:

This document reflects work planned for the calendar year 2018 as well as work published in 2017. The next Gold Standard work plan will be published in March 2019, though please note that significant updates may be made during the intervening period.

Title of document or project being developed Document Series (as per GS-SSP) Objectives Timeline Remarks
Gold Standard for the Global Goals – Standard Documentation
Fund-level Certification Pilot 300 (Annex to 301 SUD) Part of “Large-Scale Climate and Development”: Guidelines to report and certify SDG outcomes for investment fund portfolios TBC – Q3_2018 with updates to follow Initially subject to a pilot approach under the GS Sustainable Urban Development Requirements with any enhancements or additions to be formalised post-piloting.  Pilot TORs targeted for release August 2018.
Landscape Certification Guidelines 300 Part of “Large-Scale Climate and Development”: Guidelines to report and certify integrated landscape projects and programmes and their SDG outcomes TBC
Gold Standard – Related Documentation (related to but not necessarily to become part of the standard)
Value Chain Interventions Emissions –  Accounting & Reporting Guidance (not a GS4GGdocument) Part of “Corporate Climate + SDG Reporting”: Framework for accounting and reporting value chain interventions towards GHG Corporate Scope 3 inventory performance targets Public consultation June 2018, Pilot phase Q3 2018 Developed under external funding and will be a guideline for the GHG-Protocol Scope 3 Standard.  Pilot TORs to be published August 2018.
Emissions Reductions – Double Counting Tool and Guidelines 500 (Annex to 501 ER) Part of “Environmental Markets”: Risk assessment tool to help understand whether impacts (greenhouse gas emissions reductions, renewable energy generated, forests saved) from Voluntary Carbon Credit (VER) projects could be double counted against NDC Reporting under the Paris Agreement, to help future-proof the voluntary carbon market Q2_2018 Will not immediately be incorporated into the standard but is designed to inform further development on potential solutions
Shared Value Calculation Approaches — (not a GS4GGdocument) Part of “IT Revolution”: Framework to calculate the shared value of the SDG outcomes delivered by GS certified projects Q4_2018

Completed documents/projects:

Title of document or project developed Document Series (as per GS-SSP) Objectives Timeline Remarks
2017 Programmes
Gold Standard for the Global Goals – Standard publication All Publish GS4GG Q3_2017 Published July 2017
Update of GS4GG documents All Planned revision and update of GS4GG documents based on feedback received since launch in July 2017 Q1_2018 Published March 2018
Gender Equality Requirement & Guidelines SDG Impact Quantification (SDG 5) Publish new framework for gender sensitivity and responsiveness approaches Q3 2017 Published October 2017
Methodology to estimate and verify Averted Disability Adjusted Life Years (ADALYs) from cleaner household air SDG Impact Quantification (SDG 3) Publish new methodology Q1/2 2017 Published June 2017
Renewable Energy Label Requirements Product Requirements Publish new methodology for labelling of Renewable Energy Certificates Q1 2017 Published April 2018 (updated March 2018)