13 January 2010 18:20 [Source: ICIS news]
TORONTO (ICIS news)--Cap-and-trade schemes to curb global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions may turn out to be a “big scam” because they are impossible to properly police, a Canadian environmental advocacy group said on Wednesday.
Patricia Adams, executive director of Toronto-based Probe International, maintained that cap-and-trade carbon markets are political constructs controlled by politically empowered regulators who would be gatekeepers to a multi-trillion dollar market.
The regulators themselves would become too numerous to regulate, thus making way for “the tried and true recipe for good old fashioned and widespread corruption,” she said in a paper.
So much fraud had been occurring that
The essential problem of cap-and-trade was that CO2, unlike other commodities, had no inherent value. Rather, the value was in the trading permit itself, she said.
As such, neither buyer nor seller of a carbon permit had an incentive in properly policing transactions, she said.
At the same time, governments were balking at the huge cost entailed in meaningful regulation and enforcement.
“Because CO2 is ubiquitous in society, affecting most industrial processes, an army of inspectors and auditors would be needed to properly check the countless transactions that would occur to ensure that no company’s carbon foot print was understated, that every windmill contracted for in faraway lands was indeed built, that every metre measuring the flow of gas piped underground was recording CO2 and not air and that every seedling committed to be planted was planted,” Adams said.
“There are no identifiable victims. The only loser - if there is any - is the planet, and it won’t be blowing the whistle on this crime,” she said.In
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