As the world economy goes into a tailspin, the green victims are piling up. First the recycle market collapsed, making it cheaper to cut down a fresh forest, instead of recycling the paper we already have, and now the carbon markets. You know that plan which would charge polluters a fee which would to re-plant forest and other carbon off setting projects.
(Guardian) By Julian Glover
‘Roll up for the great pollution fire sale, the ultimate chance to wreck the climate on the cheap. You sir, over there, from the power company – look at this lovely tonne of freshly made, sulphur-rich carbon dioxide. Last summer it cost an eyewatering €31 to throw up your smokestack, but in our give-away global recession sale, that’s been slashed to a crazy €8.20. Dump plans for the wind turbine! Compare our offer with costly solar energy! At this low, low price you can’t afford not to burn coal!”
Set up to price pollution out of existence, carbon trading is pricing it back in. Europe’s carbon markets are in collapse.
Yet the hiss of escaping gas is almost inaudible. There’s no big news headline, nothing sensational for TV viewers to watch; no queues outside banks or missing Texan showmen. You can’t see or hear a market for a pollutant tumble. But at stake is what was supposed to be a central lever in the world’s effort to turn back climate change. Intended to price fossil fuels out of the market, the system is instead turning them into the rational economic choice.
That there exists something called carbon trading is about all that most people know. A few know, too, that Europe has created carbon exchanges, and traders who buy and sell. Few but the professionals, however, know that this market is now failing in its purpose: to edge up the cost of emitting CO2.
Read the full story on: guardian.co.uk