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Are Toxic Gases Being Created Just To Earn Carbon Credits?

Publication Date: 
September 12, 2012
Daily News & Analysis (DNA
Gangadhar S. Patil

Professor Michael Wara sounds off on whether most carbon credits are "creations of bogus accounts" or "come from projects which are suspected of over-crediting" in this Daily News & Analysis.

Are firms deliberately overproducing greenhouse gases (GHG) for the sole purpose of destroying them in order to earn revenue through the sale of carbon credits under the clean development mechanism or CDM scheme?

The first indication is the fact that an analysis of the total carbon credits issued to projects across the globe, including India, shows that over 50 per cent of the total carbon credits issued until July 2012 were for the destruction of a deadly greenhouse gas called HFC-23 (Hydro Fluoro Carbons-23). It is 11,700 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide and is created during the manufacture of HCFC-22, a gas used in refrigerators and air conditioners.


Lawyer and CDM expert Michael Wara from Stanford University, California, told DNA that most credits generated in the CDM come from projects which are suspected of over-crediting and are creations of bogus accounting. "Since the CDM credits these firms produce are bought by developed countries that use them in lieu of reducing their own emissions, any fraud in the CDM leads to increase in emissions over the limits set under the Kyoto Protocol," he said.