“Carbon trading has become a huge business based on the absence of delivery of an invisible substance to no one.”
Harper’s Magazine Feb. 2010
Conning the Climate
Joanne Nova, who used to be a ‘green and then I grew up’ describes this lucrative trade in ‘hot air’.
INTERPOL’S “Guide to Carbon Trading Crime” outlines how the intangible nature of carbon makes it an ideal market for criminal activity.
The lucrative nature of this elusive ‘commodity’ in a global market that is valued at USD 176 Billion (Interpol 2013) had led to diverse criminal acts such as computer hacking, theft of certificates and resale (leading to VAT losses to countries and low income taxpayers), laundering organized crime money. REDD Monitor reports various illegal activities related to forests and carbon trading. “Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) is an effort to create a financial value for the carbon stored in forests, offering incentives for developing countries to reduce emissions from forested lands and invest in low-carbon paths to sustainable development.”
And the real problem is that YOU pay – one way or another.
When carbon criminals do cyber-crimes of moving carbon credits from one country to another, the Value Added Taxes (GST) are lost, leaving a hole in government funds for citizens.
When carbon taxes are put on consumer goods, especially power generation, then consumers are forced into heat-or-eat poverty; then conventional coal or natural gas energy providers lose market share – so they demand subsidies…taxpayers have to pay that!
In the meantime, carbon trading in places like Asia has meant that pollution has become a gold mine. This example shows how the World Bank and a private fund made $1.2 billion in 23 minutes, trading carbon credits on the pollution of a Chinese factory. With that kind of money at stake, no wonder the ‘climate catastrophe’ story drives the climate change discussion. Otherwise, who would agree to allow this?