(June 10, 2010) As rich countries continue with plans to pour money into forestry programs in the developing world as a way to combat climate change they should heed warnings that the programs will fail to reduce carbon emissions, strip local citizens of their ownership rights, and be ridden with fraud and corruption.
Power taken from the people: UN carbon scheme threatens to ‘recentralize’ forest governance, spelling doom for forest ecologies
(May 18, 2010) A carbon emissions program created by the United Nations and financed by the UN and development institutions may strip forest use and management from citizens in the developing world, writes Brady Yauch.
The Offsetters’ Paradox: Wind mills in China highlight incurable problem with international carbon credits
(May 7, 2010) Carbon credits given to Chinese wind projects are part of a much larger problem with the UN’s carbon market, writes Brady Yauch.
(May 3, 2010) The carbon market may suffer a fallout similar to what happened recently to the subprime market in the United States.
(April 27, 2010) When regulators created Europe’s carbon market, it appears that regulating it wasn’t at the top of their agenda. But now, after several scandals have helped to bring the carbon market to a standstill and highlight its susceptibility to fraud, one of the carbon market’s biggest players – Barclays Capital – says it’s time for better regulation.
(April 22, 2010) Buyers of voluntary carbon credits take note: you might be a victim of environmental fraud. A recent investigation by the Christian Science Monitor (CSM) and the New England Centre for Investigative Reporting (NECIR) found that the burgeoning $700-million market for voluntary carbon credits has been selling credits backed by empty promises rather than tangible environmental benefits.
(April 13, 2010) To save the planet from man-made global warming, the EU created a cap-and-trade system under which polluters can buy ever- diminishing rights to emit CO2. That “market,” created by regulatory fiat to satisfy the Kyoto Protocol, has been up and running since 2006. But last month, Hungary brought Europe’s carbon market to its knees. How? It sold “used” or “spent” carbon credits that found their way back onto the market, casting doubt on the authenticity of all credits.
(February 23, 2010) Optimists say the carbon market could one day be worth as much as $2-3 trillion dollars if countries like the United States implement a legally-binding cap-and-trade system. But those numbers may be wildly optimistic in the wake of the scandals involving scientists and research centres supporting climate change and the recent political back-tracking on implementing cap-and-trade schemes. More realistically, the carbon market is struggling just to stay relevant.
(February 22, 2010) After political leaders failed at December’s climate summit in Copenhagen to agree to a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, the price of carbon has been slowly deflating. Many investors are now wary of pouring more money into a scheme that depends on political will, rather than economic fundamentals.
(February 15, 2010) Carbon markets have suffered a number of criticisms since they were first introduced — ranging from being a haven for white collar crime to a sponsor of environmental harm in Third World communities. With global leaders failing to reach an agreement to extend the Kyoto Protocol at the December meeting in Copenhagen, many people are asking if carbon markets will survive at all (also see here and here).
(Jaunary 28, 2010) Banks and other investors are pulling out of the carbon market after government leaders at last month’s meeting in Copenhagen failed to come up with new emissions targets beyond the current Kyoto Treaty, which ends in 2012. According to a recent report in the UK Guardian, a number of carbon fianciers have already begun leaving banks in London due to a lack of activity and a pull-back in investment demand.
(December 23, 2009) A recent article in the Wall Street Journal details one of the many problems facing the implementation of carbon markets: the political tampering of an artificial market. According to the story, Russia is demanding that it be able to retain its massive surplus of emissions permits after they expire in 2012. Yet, critics argue that if Russia were to off-load these credits on international carbon markets, it would lead to a collapse in the price of carbon.
(December 23, 2009) Green electricity from north China’s growing wind power generators is being wasted because the country’s power grid cannot absorb it, power experts said.
(December 11, 2009) Recent reports say that a United Nations committee has stopped giving carbon credits to developers of wind energy projects in China, citing concerns that the projects qualified for the credits unfairly. The UN is concerned that the Chinese government lowered its subsidies to wind farms so they would qualify for carbon credits through the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM).
(December 9, 2009) The European Union (EU) Emission Trading System (ETS) has been the victim of fraudulent traders in the past 18 months. This resulted in losses of approximately 5 billion euros for several national tax revenues. It is estimated that in some countries, up to 90% of the whole market volume was caused by fraudulent activities.