David Antonioli, the CEO and founder of carbon credit certifiyng company Verra, announced earlier this week that he will be stepping down after leading the company for the last 15 years.
“Under [Antonioli’s] leadership, Verra has grown into an organisation that is critical to achieving the goal of the Paris Agreement and ensuring sustainable development around the world,” said Ken Markowitz, Verra board chair.
Starting in 2009, the organization has been working on issuing carbon credits for forest conservation and replanting projects , as well as a variety of other approaches that involve reducing emission with a market approach. It has issued over a billion credits and accounted for 70% of the market in the United States in 2020.
Stepping in as interim CEO will be the recently hired Judith Simon, who has been serving as president of Verra since February.
Her appointment came after a string of negative publicity was triggered by an investigation by the Guardian and Die Zeit alleging that carbon credits issued by Verra were essentially “worthless” because of faulty baselines, overstated threats of deforestation and innacurate measuring.
Antonioli opposed the claims of the investigation but Verra has been working on revising some of its standards and in April it shared some of its new methodology.
Read more: Verra Rejects The Guardian’s Reporting It Will Replace Its Rainforest Offset Program