Price of Carbon Units

Cost of Carbon Units


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Internal factors influencing the price formation of a carbon unit include:

  • The cost of implementing a climate project depends on its type (forest restoration, energy efficiency, renewable energy), geography, additional social and economic factors (job creation, improvement of local residents’ quality of life, biodiversity conservation).
  • Expected profit from the climate project.
  • The cost of registering the climate project and carbon unit transactions in the Registry.
  • Costs associated with selling carbon units depend on the chosen method (self-search for buyers, intermediary services, commodity exchange, organized auctions).

External (market) factors affecting the price of carbon units include:


Volume of regulated emissions. From 2024 to 2028, within the framework of the Sakhalin experiment, measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions have been introduced for 35 regional organizations.

At present, it is not possible to assess the demand for carbon units from these organizations. By 2025, they need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 160,000 tons. In case of inability to fulfill obligations to reduce emissions, organizations can:

  • Purchase carbon units.
  • Pay a fixed fee for exceeding each ton of quota in the amount of 1,000 rubles. This option is simpler and corresponds to the market price of carbon units.

Carbon Footprint Offsetting

Carbon footprint is the total volume of greenhouse gas emissions and absorptions formed during the production of goods or the provision of services. Since September 2022, one deal for 1000 carbon units has been concluded, and they were retired to offset the carbon footprint.


Investment interest in the carbon unit market potentially may lead to an increase in demand.


The number of implemented climate projects: At the time of writing this material, there are 93,951 carbon units from 19 climate projects on the market. 65,601,616 carbon units are planned to be issued during the project implementation period.

Screenshot from the website of the Carbon Unit Registry Operator
Screenshot from the website of the Carbon Unit Registry Operator

Factors Stimulating Demand

Demand for carbon units may increase with the implementation of the following measures:

  • Implementation of a carbon pricing system. This will encourage companies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and purchase carbon units to compensate for inevitable emissions.
  • Establishment of a voluntary product certification system considering the carbon footprint. Consumers consciously approaching the choice of products will stimulate manufacturers to reduce emissions and purchase carbon units.
  • Development of initiatives aimed at generating foreign demand for Russian carbon units. This will expand the market and increase unit prices.

Price of Carbon Units According to concluded deals

Since the start of the Carbon Unit Registry in September 2022, the National Commodity Exchange has conducted two auctions. The total volume of transactions amounted to 2,755 carbon units. The price per unit ranged from 700 to 1,000 rubles.

Another deal for 1000 carbon units was conducted directly between companies without disclosing the cost.

Link to a table with up-to-date deals data


Thus, during the Registry’s operation, a small volume of transactions with carbon units is observed, so it is premature to talk about the formation of a market price for a carbon unit.

In the near future, an increase in demand in the carbon market can be expected due to the implementation of the Sakhalin experiment.

The probability of other factors influencing demand will be known after the approval of the Action Plan for the Implementation of the Strategy for Socio-Economic Development of the Russian Federation with Low Greenhouse Gas Emissions until 2050, which is currently under discussion.