Carbon blackmail?

“China and Brazil have warned that one of the world’s biggest carbon markets will be under threat if wealthy countries reject their demands for a new phase of the Kyoto protocol.”

The Financial Times reports,

China and Brazil have warned that one of the world’s biggest carbon markets will be under threat if wealthy countries reject their demands for a new phase of the Kyoto protocol.

It is “inconceivable” that the $20bn UN-backed carbon offset market can continue unless countries agree to a second round of pledges under the Kyoto climate treaty after the first round expires in 12 months, China’s chief negotiator told the FT…

The market grew out of a programme called the Clean Development Mechanism, or CDM, that is written into the 1997 Kyoto climate pact, the world’s only treaty obliging countries to curb their carbon pollution.

The CDM programme allows companies in wealthy countries to offset their emissions by buying credits generated from carbon-cutting projects in developing countries.
The programme has become popular among companies and investors in industrialised countries because it offers a cheaper way to meet carbon targets – and generates profits for the new breed of companies that finance the system.

But its popularity has made it an inviting negotiating pawn for developing countries, which were never legally bound to cut their carbon emissions under Kyoto and instead want increasingly reluctant rich countries to continue leading the fight against climate change…

Read the FT article.