Channel 4 have a Dispatches program tonight exposing the fraudulent "carbon offset" bizniz which Lord Patel has been doing for a long time -see all these posts.
It is called The Great Green Smoke Screen Channel 4 News science correspondent Tom Clarke dissects the many 'solutions' to global warming being marketed to onsumers, from tree-planting and carbon offsetting to green energy tariffs, and reveals how attempts to buy our way out of climate crisis may (good weasel word here - don't commit yourself Tom) be making things worse.
He is not the only one.. this is a good place to start ...
"Carbon Trading: A Critical Conversation on Climate Change, Privatisation and Power" a product of the Dag Hammarskjold Foundation.Which they call their Development Dialogue 2006:September, no.48 You can download (PDF alert) the whole 350 odd pages or (recommended) 6 seperate chapters.
Better still obtain a free copy by e-mailing Kajsajsa.firstname.lastname@example.org or (in Britain only) email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or Fax: +46-18-12 20 72
This is how they outline the plot in an arch and quaint fashion but does give you an idea of the content - read and judge for yourself.
Chapter 1 A new fossil fuel crisis/ In which the growing climate crisis is traced mainly to the mining of coal, oil and gas; the dangers to survival and livelihood are outlined; the political nature and implications of the problem explored; and reasonable and unreasonable solutions sketched.
Chapter 2 ‘Made in the USA’ / A short history of carbon trading In which the surprising story is told of how corporations, academics, governments, United Nations agencies and environmentalists united around a neoliberal or ‘market’ approach to climate change emanating from North America.
Chapter 3 Lessons unlearned / In which carbon trading, contrary to slogans about the universal eff ectiveness of markets in dealing with environmental and social problems, is shown to be ill-suited to addressing climate change. The experience of the US in pollution trading is demonstrated to be an argument not for, but rather against, making carbon markets the centrepiece of action on global warming.
Chapter 4 Off sets / The fossil economy’s new arena of conflict In which it is shown how projects designed to compensate’ for continued fossil fuel use are helping to dispossess ordinary people of their land, water, air – and futures.
Chapter 5 Ways forward / In which the claim that ‘there is no alternative’ to carbon trading is dissected and set aside, and emerging alliances for a more democratic and effective climate politics are explored.
Pollution trading the authors have belatedly recognised is a completely new idea, foisted on the world by a small circle of neoliberal institutions in the US. Surprise - Surprise !! Pollution trading’s main appeal is that it promises to save make money for the rich over the short term.
As a pollution control policy, it is sure to fail..... ahem .. in Europe where it HAS been tried ...it has FAILED ... the ETS market closed on Friday at just 12 cents, the lowest ever....having made a lot of traders, lawyers, accountants, banks very rich on the way and many credulous investors much poorer.All credit to media lens for finally realising what twats they have been all these years as the wool has been ever so gently pulled over their eyes... quite how difficult is it to deprive children of their candy ?
Pssssst.... want to stop somebody doing something? - tax and regulate, admittedly it has limited itility eg. European fuel taxes cf USA ... but of course it depends what you do with the taxes you raise.. the European Gubments just piss them up against the wall.
Anyway read the report - 350 pages but it's big type on artfully landscaped pages and the text boxes a la US textbooks makes reading easier ... the Bibliography is excellent. See also ....See also "Obscenity' of carbon trading" by Kevin Smith in the BBC Green Room , he is a researcher with Carbon Trade Watch, a project of the Transnational Institute which studies the impacts of carbon trading on society and the environment.Also by him "Stern Words While in Europe They are trading Hot air" also at (http://www.thepolitician.org/)
"Labour MP Gerry Steinberg described the scheme as a ‘mockery’ and an ‘outrageous waste of public money’.""A massively generous allocation resulted in windfall profits for some of the UK’s most polluting companies, to the collective value of £940 million according to Franck Schuttelar, an analyst at the energy-trading firm Gaselys
.""Waiting yet more years to learn further lessons from the next round of
ineffective emissions trading is a luxury we don’t have."
See also his "Carbon Cop outs" - He is also co-author of The Carbon Neutral Myth: offset indulgences for your climate sins, forthcoming in January 2007.See also Climate Fraud and Carbon Colonialism: The New Trade in Greenhouse Gases (pdf alert)by Heidi Bachram CAPITALISM NATURE SOCIALISM VOLUME 15 NUMBER4 (DECEMBER 2004)
"The changes necessary to avert climate catastrophe are simple enough, namely, a switch away from fossil fuels and to renewable energy like solar and wind, along with a reduction in energy use generally."
You can watch Channel 4 Live on the net anywhere by going here and logging in.
An infuriating program with a few nuggets of information and a lot of footage of the telegenic reporter sitting at a laptop loking puzzled.
It has been said before ... carbon offsets are the equivalent of the mediaeval church selling indulgencies - if you don't know what they are Google it.
There is one effective way to reduce carbon dioxide emissions - and New Zealand have recently introduced it. An energy tax. Not the complete answer, not the only answer but a good start. Carbon trading just fills the wallets of financiers and their lawyers, advisors, consultants, and PR boosters. They found their top shill in the hapless, hopeless, chinless Margaret Beckett who thankfully appears to have gone to that great Caravan in the sky.