Navigating Macrotrends in Carbon Markets: An Industry Assessment

Energy Transition
30 Apr 2024

This strategic panel discussion will be centred around trends developing in domestic and international carbon markets. As markets evolve, both regulated and voluntary, the supply and demand for carbon removal and reduction is shifting. Generation of carbon credits is one of the fastest-growing industries and shifting market dynamics result in greater market fluctuations. Hear from our expert panel as they share their views on where markets are heading and how decarbonization is evolving.

With the federal Output-Based Pricing System (OBPS) and provincial alternatives generating record amounts of credits, how is the economy being shaped and driven to achieve some form of decarbonization? We will discuss the increasing carbon price with the regulated market sitting at $80/tonne and forecasts to $170/tonne by 2030. Globally, the unregulated voluntary market is both contracting and expanding, promoting global shifts in investment and trade. Is this market a key driver in decarbonization? Where does a proposed cap and trade system fit and will it work?


Key topics to be covered include:

– Current state of affairs in Canadian carbon markets
– Output-Based Pricing System (OBPS)
– Voluntary vs. regulated market pricing
– Carbon pricing implications on Canadian businesses’ decarbonization efforts
– Canada Growth Fund offers up to $7B for contracts for differences

Gordon Evens — Director, Environmental Products Trading at RBC

Gordon has 10+ years in commodity trading markets. He is responsible for the Environmental Trading desk at RBC which offers risk management solutions for global carbon emissions and North American power. Gordon is a member of the Environmental Market Solutions Group which acts as a centre of expertise for carbon markets and renewable energy solutions.

Robert Frank — Director, Low Carbon Trading & Biogas Origination at bp

Robert is Director of Low Carbon Trading & Biogas Origination for bp, based in Calgary. Robert has 11 years of experience in the energy industry with a background in various commercial groups including natural gas trading, structured derivative products, and origination in products from oil and gas to power and various environmental products. Recent efforts have been focused on clean fuel generation, leveraging low-carbon credits and carbon reduction, and exploring new opportunities within the market.

Ian Kuwahara — Director, Energy and Industrial Innovation at Verra

As Director, Energy and Industrial Innovation, Ian leads Verra’s innovation strategy related to the industrial and energy sectors. His focus lies in accelerating emission reduction opportunities related to Carbon Capture Utilization & Storage (CCUS), methane management, and accelerating the clean energy transition.

Ian previously worked at the Alberta Energy Regulator. There, he helped develop a number of methane emission reduction regulations, helped develop an online reporting platform, served on numerous committees for emission reductions and quantification. Prior to this, Ian was Director at Cap-Op Energy, a sustainability consulting company specializing in emission reductions. He led offset development and quantification projects related to carbon capture and storage, enhanced oil recovery, biofuel development, renewable energy, and methane destruction.

Jana McDonald — Founder and CEO of Guardyan Conservation and CDO of Obsidian Engineering

Jana’s background in communication, negotiation and corporate development in the Oil and Gas industry has stewarded her passion for integrating her network and client base into the carbon markets. Beginning with carbon trading in early 2020, she identified the lack of credit development for profit within Canada.

Since founding Guardyan Conservation, Jana has analyzed the feasibility of projects ranging from agriculture to transportation, technology, efficiencies, renewables, solar and land use. She is a hands-on leader who continues to expand Guarydan’s influence and client base through the development of millions of credits per year.


Amy Zell — Technical Director, Voluntary Carbon Markets at IETA

Amy has been a leader in carbon markets since 2018 where she has worked on offset project development, strategic Net Zero advisory, and market intelligence. Her passion for balancing economic imperatives with environmental realities has led to her current role. Amy is a professional engineer registered with APEGA and is the Founder and Lead Consultant of Outset Carbon Consulting.