What is DNV’s approach to carbon offsets? 

Forest aerial view

Contact us:

Ellen Skarsgård

Ellen Skarsgård

Head of Sustainability Development and Climate

In 2020, DNV set a goal to become climate positive. This means we aim to remove more greenhouse gas emissions from the atmosphere than we create as an organization.


We understand that addressing climate change requires a comprehensive approach, which begins with a thorough evaluation of our carbon emissions and reducing these first, then compensate for our remaining emissions and, in the longer term, to neutralise emissions with equivalent removals. Reducing our emissions is a priority, and a continuous process.


As a company, our near-term goal is to achieve a 50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2025, compared to our baseline from 2019. We are achieving this through a combination of strategies, including the adoption of renewable energy sources, the reduction of air travel, and switching to an electric car fleet. Our emissions inventory is published in our Annual Report. Despite these efforts, we acknowledge that a residual carbon footprint will remain. 


DNV has purchased carbon credits to match and ‘offset’ our emissions from 2018 to-2022 emissions. Carbon credits purchased do not contribute or negate to our near-term emissions reduction targets, they are in addition to other efforts. Our emissions are published annually as part of our Annual Report. In 2022, we selected two reforestation (ARR) projects with sustainably-managed timber plantations in Paraguay (Miller plantations) and in Sierra Leone (Miro plantations). Both projects store carbon efficiently while providing an income to hundreds of local people and their families. The projects are listed on the Verra Registry and follow the Verified Carbon Standard.

We recognize that offsets are contentious and there are many valid criticisms of the schemes. We take these criticisms seriously as part of our decision process when selecting projects to invest in. We believe the increased scrutiny will help to improve the carbon credit market over time.

During 2022, we reviewed our approach to obtaining carbon credits, taking into account issues such as transparency, traceability, and the quality of carbon credits in the voluntary carbon market. As a result, we created a new due diligence process to assess additionality (whether the project contributes to more carbon storage than if the investment did not take place), project risks, and whether the projects are well managed and anchored in the community. DNV’s goal is to have long-term commitment to the projects we support. 


When we explore our options to offset our carbon footprint, we use our project selection criteria. We are interested in projects that actually remove and store carbon, and that contribute positively to the local community. 

DNV has currently defined the following criteria: 

  • Projects that are defined as carbon removal, not just emissions as per the Oxford Offsetting principles of 2020. 
  • Verra, VCS, Gold standard or other recognized standards and accreditations 
  • Ability to engage over a longer term, taking into account social and biodiversity impacts.

To move beyond offsets, we are investigating carbon removal projects where we can leverage our technical expertise to help scale innovation and technology. Our first project, Seaweed Carbon Solutions, demonstrates our commitment to investing in cutting-edge initiatives that hold the potential to deliver significant positive impact. 

We will continue to explore additional opportunities to invest in innovative nature-based solutions and carbon removal projects, with the goal of making a tangible contribution towards achieving a low-carbon future.

Contact us:

Ellen Skarsgård

Ellen Skarsgård

Head of Sustainability Development and Climate

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