Trading is working? Really?

Hello, CARB, you guys reading the papers???

Cuts in carbon emissions by developed countries since 1990 have been cancelled out three times over by increases in imported goods from developing countries such as China, according to the most comprehensive global figures ever compiled.


According to standard data, developed countries can claim to have reduced their collective emissions by almost 2% between 1990 and 2008. But once the carbon cost of imports have been added to each country, and exports subtracted – the true change has been an increase of 7%.   If Russia and Ukraine – which cut their CO2 emissions rapidly in the 1990s due to economic collapse – are excluded, the rise is 12%.

I’m just sayin’…

You know, people–I’ll just use Ann Carlson at UCLA as a recent example–are so quick to say that we’re fighting against trading because we don’t think reductions will happen in our communities, and how wrong we are for thinking that.

Well, that’s kind of right (well, not the part about us being wrong for thinking that).

Really, I’ve been fighting against trading from the beginning because its a distraction from the real work of addressing greenhouse gas emissions.  That’s why when we released our Declaration Against the Use of Trading and Offsets to Address Climate Change in 2008, we also released our top 13 reasons for opposing trading and offsets–The Cap and Trade Charade for Climate Change (re-posted below).  Yes, “hot-spots” are a concern–but it’s not by mistake that concern is found at number 11 on the list.  “Hot-spots” are a critically important concern–but not the only concern.  Not by a long shot.

Fundamentally, if trading and offsets are going to used to reduce carbon emissions–don’t trading and offsets have to succeed at reducing carbon emissions?  I mean, really.

The Cap and Trade Charade for Climate Change

13 Reasons Why Trading and Offset Use are NOT a Solution to Climate Change:

1.  Time is of the essence

2.  The European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) has failed to deliver greenhouse gas emission reductions

3.  Although the EU-ETS has not reduced greenhouse gas emissions it has awarded windfall profits to the largest polluters

4.  Trading stifles technological innovation needed to achieve long term goals for greenhouse gas reductions

5.  Global offsets are often unverifiable, lead to oppression, and do not benefit our communities

6.  Trading is undemocratic, secretive, and excludes the public from decision-making about whether and how to address greenhouse gas emissions

7.  Trading intensifies financial incentives for fraud

8.  There is a broad-based rejection of trading

9.  Climate change disproportionately affects communities of color fundamentally linking environmental justice to the need for real greenhouse gas emissions reductions

10.  Failure to address the primary cause of greenhouse gas emissions will also fail to address the primary cause of negative health, safety, and quality of life impacts in communities of color

11.  Pollution trading can create and exacerbate existing pollution “hot-spots”

12.  Trading, investing, profiting and gambling on public health is just wrong

13.  There is a better way

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