Ten Ways to Game the Carbon Market

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Friends of the Earth

Dear Carlos,

After months of tedious negotiations, Senators John Kerry and Joe Lieberman last week introduced a draft of their cap-and-trade bill, the American Power Act. The bill pampers the country's worst industrial polluters while eliminating key components of the Clean Air Act.

I'm writing today to share information about a different, troubling part of the bill — and to invite you to join me in working to make it better.

The American Power Act stakes solving the climate crisis on the creation of a risky new carbon market that depends on carbon offsets to reduce global warming pollution. Carbon offsets are a way for corporations to "pass the buck" — allowing them to send money overseas for projects that promise to reduce emissions so they can continue to pollute in the United States. To have any benefit, carbon offset projects need to result in real reductions in climate-disrupting emissions. But we've seen that not all offset projects clearly lead to reductions. (Click here to learn more about carbon offsets.)

We've released a new tongue-in-cheek "guide" called Ten Ways to Game the Carbon Market that details ten different ways that fraud, corruption, and gaming abuses can occur in a carbon trading system like the one proposed in the Kerry-Lieberman draft bill.

Read the guide and sign our petition calling for no offsets in a cap-and-trade system.

Nine of the ten methods have already been successfully carried out. One scam is a variation on the classic Ponzi scheme that was perpetrated by emissions trader Anne Masters Sholtz with California's pollution trading program in 2000.

Would you stake the future of our economy and our climate on a system prone to corruption and fraud? Neither would we. Learn more and sign our petition today.

The American Power Act allows for some two billion tons of offsets to enter the U.S. carbon market. Not only does this open the door to fraud, it also allows the buildup of subprime carbon in the trading system. Subprime carbon is composed of carbon offset futures that, compared with regular emissions allowances, have a relatively high risk of collapsing in financial value because of failed promises to reduce emissions.

Don't let Wall Street wreak any more havoc. Say no to offsets by clicking here to learn more and sign our petition.

As the Senate continues to debate financial regulation reform as well as climate change, Friends of the Earth will continue to sound the alarm about the corporate polluters and their Wall Street allies that have co-opted our democracy for their own profit. We hope you'll join us.


Michelle Chan
Senior Policy Analyst, Friends of the Earth

Friends of the Earth
1100 15th Street NW
11th Floor
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 783-7400

Friends of the Earth
311 California Street
Suite 510
San Francisco, CA 94104
(415) 544-0790

Friends of the Earth and our network of grassroots groups in 77 countries
defend the environment and fight to create a more healthy, just world. Our current campaigns focus on clean energy and
solutions to global warming, protecting people from toxic and new, potentially harmful technologies,
and promoting smarter, low-pollution transportation alternatives.

Posted via email from Street_Visuals


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