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Breaking News cop25  can paris accord signatories beat the fossil industry | Breaking News

COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry

by: Dharna Noor
cop25  can paris accord signatories beat the fossil industry | Breaking News

The stakes couldn’t be higher for COP25 (Conference of the Parties). The United Nation’s (UN) own recent reports show that the only way we can avert climate disaster will be rapidly phasing out the use of fossil fuels. But the fossil fuel industry say they’ve got another solution to the climate crisis: carbon markets that allow companies to offset pollution by buying credits. Big Oil has had outsize influence on UN climate talks, particularly as an industry that caused the crisis we’re in.

Beat The Fossil Industry: Carbon Markets Failure

And their idea - which is enshrined in the Paris Agreement - to let markets work their magic has a huge catch. The carbon markets already in existence have so far failed to deliver meaningful cuts to greenhouse gas emissions. What’s more, they’ve also screwed people. Now the next five days have set up a tense struggle between major emitters and the people forced to contend with pollution and displacement. The largest problem with the markets discussion in international climate talks centers around human rights protections. Or more accurately, lack thereof.

Recommended: Climate Agreement Paris And The Denial Of President Trump

The portion of the Paris Accord that outlines the role of carbon markets is Article 6. It’s widely regarded as the most controversial part of the whole agreement—nations didn’t even agree to include it until the final morning of 2015’s negotiations. And at last year’s climate talks, it was the only major segment that negotiators didn’t finalize. That’s why it’s at the top of this year’s agenda.

What does cop25 stand for?
2019 UN Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP 25) 11-22 November 2019. Santiago, Chile. The United Nations Framework Convention (UNFCCC) is the international response to climate change. It is a treaty that establishes the basic obligations of the 196 Parties (States) plus the European Union to combat climate change.

COP25: Paris Accord: Article 6

COP demonstrations article 6

Traditionally, carbon markets allow nations and corporations that have big carbon footprints to purchase credits from those that with smaller ones or to offset them by investing in decarbonizing projects like sustainable energy or reforestation, instead of by polluting less. So perhaps it’s not surprising that oil companies are pushing for them. But their role in getting them on the agenda is still striking. Last year, the Intercept revealed that an executive from Shell said his company helped write Article 6. Oil companies and their trade associations have since gone all in pushing carbon markets, and they’ve been all over COP25.


                                             COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry
                  Police Halt Activist-Led "Toxic Tour" of Spain's "Dirtiest" Corporate Polluters Sponsoring COP25

What Does The Paris Accord Say About Carbon Markets?

What is the role of a carbon market?
Carbon markets aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG, or “carbon”) emissions cost-effectively by setting limits on emissions and enabling the trading of emission units, which are instruments representing emission reductions.

Article 6 has three operative paragraphs, two of which relate to carbon markets:

  • Article 6.2 provides an accounting framework for international cooperation, such as linking the emissions-trading schemes of two or more countries (for example, linking the European Union cap-and-trade program with emissions-reduction transfers from Switzerland). It also allows for the international transfer of carbon credits between countries.
  • Article 6.4 establishes a central UN mechanism to trade credits from emissions reductions generated through specific projects. For example, country A could pay for country B to build a wind farm instead of a coal plant. Emissions are reduced, country B benefits from the clean energy and country A gets credit for the reductions.
  • Article 6.8 establishes a work program for non-market approaches, such as applying taxes to discourage emissions. For this explainer, we will focus on the carbon markets elements of Article 6.

While Article 6 established these concepts in broad strokes and countries achieved some progress on defining the rules over the years, their final shape remains yet to be agreed. Finalizing these rules is a key agenda item for COP25.

Oil pumps

Recomended: Climate Change; CO2 Emissions In Europe Don’t Matter Much

What Benefits Could Carbon Markets Offer If Rules Are Designed Well?

Carbon markets are a big deal, both in terms of potential emissions reductions and the cost savings they can generate. Half of countries’ initial NDCs (constituting 31% of global emissions) include the use of international cooperation through carbon markets. According to IETA, the potential benefits to cooperation under Article 6 include cost savings of $250 billion per year in 2030. International cooperation through carbon markets can bring additional public and private finance and catalyze emissions reductions in a country hosting the mitigation activity. And for purchasing or acquiring countries, using carbon markets enables access to a wider pool of opportunities to reduce emissions. This might lead to higher ambition, given that mitigation can be made more cost-effective, which provides flexibility.

What Are The Biggest Risks If Rules On International Carbon Markets Are Designed Poorly?

white oil pipes man

What is the meaning of carbon trading?
Carbon trading is an approach used to control carbon dioxide (CO2) pollution by providing economic incentives for achieving emissions reductions. ... Companies that need to increase their allowance must buy credits from those who pollute less. The transfer of allowances is referred to as a trade.

Without the right rules in place, Article 6 could actually weaken countries’ NDCs and increase global emissions. There are a few ways in which this could happen:

  • Double-counting: For example, country A might build a wind farm and then sell the credits for those emissions reductions to country B, so now country B can count those emissions reductions as part of its progress to achieving its NDC. But if country A claims those same emissions reductions toward achieving its own NDC, that is double-counting. While the Paris Agreement is clear that double-counting must be avoided under Article 6, the extent to which double-counting is actually avoided depends on how accounting rules are operationalized. If emissions reductions are double-counted, it will potentially result in an increase in global emissions and weaken the already inadequate NDCs.
  • Additionality: The way in which Article 6 is finalized will dictate whether emissions reductions under Article 6 will be additional to what would have occurred anyway. For example, if country A was already going to build that wind farm instead of a coal plant, here the carbon market didn’t offer a climate benefit. Without guidance ensuring additionality of emissions reductions, Article 6 rules could weaken NDCs.
  • Failing to deliver increased ambition and progression: Article 6 can be designed in a way that either supports or hinders increased ambition for example, by determining whether subsequent NDCs will be incentivized to increase coverage of GHGs and sectors over time, and whether transfers of emissions reductions will result in greater emissions cuts.

Beat The Fossil Industry: Corporate Sponsors Of The COP

Fossil fuel industry lobying

“The moment you really get off the metro stop by the conference, you start seeing advertisements from some of the corporate sponsors of the COP, which include some of Spain’s biggest polluters,” Sriram Madhusoodnan, Deputy Campaigns Manager for Corporate Accountability, told Earther in an interview from Madrid. “And within the COP itself, as you walk through, you see these massive pavilions from polluters and their trade associations... who are pushing their false solutions through the talks.”

How does fuel pollute the environment?
Gasoline use contributes to air pollution
The vapors given off when gasoline evaporates and the substances produced when gasoline is burned (carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and unburned hydrocarbons) contribute to air pollution. Burning gasoline also produces carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas.

The International Emissions Trading Association (IETA), which represents oil and gas majors such as Shell Oil, BP, and Chevron, is rolling deep at the UN climate talks. They have 140 representatives at the conference, which is bigger than the EU’s entire delegation. And they’re holding an average of seven events every day at the conference. This year, they’re pushing a new initiative called “Markets for Nature Based Solutions” to trade carbon credits based on sustainable agriculture and forestation.

Recommended: Fossil Fuel Will Dominate Energy Use Through 2050: Globally

“What does it mean for me if someone’s polluting really bad in my neighborhood, but then they can just go off and plant some trees in another country?” More nature sounds nice, but the impacts on communities where local projects get underway can cause widespread displacement. A World Bank and UN carbon offsetting program, for instance, was complicit in land grabs in Kenya where the government forced thousands of Sengwar indigenous people from their ancestral homes. The same program also forced locals away from their villages to make space for reforestation projects in Acre, Brazil. Both groups, it should be noted, had tiny carbon footprints.

Recommended: Amazon Water War: Fires, Hydro Dams, Climate Change S.O.S.

And it’s not just forest offsets programs that have created these horrors: In one case under the Kyoto Protocol, the creation of a hydroelectric dam in Panama resulted in homes and agricultural lands being destroyed, and the ensuing protests and police brutality left three indigenous people dead.

Offset programs also do nothing to undo environmental racism at the source of pollution. A 2018 study, for instance, showed that since California’s cap-and-trade system began in 2013, over half of the facilities involved emitted more greenhouse gases. Those polluting facilities, such as fossil fuel producers and power plants, were disproportionately located in low-income areas and communities of color. That exposed the people living there to more air pollution and risk of health problems that comes with it.

Graph carbon trade trees

“What does it mean for me if someone’s polluting really bad in my neighborhood, but then they can just go off and plant some trees in another country?” Cynthia Mellon, a representative of the Climate Justice Alliance, told Earther on the phone from Madrid. In finalizing Article 6, advocates have pushed nations to include human rights protections. But the latest drafts show they haven’t done so yet.

Recommended: Why Is Our Renewable Technology Powered By Child Labor?

“That there is no explicit language on human rights and indigenous rights, just placeholders in brackets for ‘elements of Paris Agreement preamble,’” Madhusoodnan said. “That’s really concerning, because we know that over the second week, we’re going to see these negotiations really move into much more closed door sessions, where it’s going to be really hard to follow what’s happening.”

What is the primary purpose of Kyoto Protocol?
The Kyoto Protocol is a protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and an international agreement that aims to reduce the emissions of six greenhouse gases that cause global warming

Despite IETA’s optimistic language about carbon markets, in practice, these schemes have been rife with problems. When the European Union established a carbon market in 2005, it doled out so many free credits to polluters that it drove down the price of carbon and failed to make a dent in emissions. The global carbon market developed under the Kyoto Protocol—the precursor to the Paris Agreement—was no better. The so-called Clean Development Mechanism ended up funneling billions of dollars into projects that failed to reduce emissions 85 percent of the time.

Recommended: Who’s Greta Thunberg’s Rival On Climate Facts, Naomi Seibt?

Gretha Thunberg

Membership to IETA is open to companies, business organizations and affiliated national and regional trading associations.
Current Members include: greenhouse gas emitters, verifiers, certifiers, auditors, investors, insurers, traders, brokers, financial and commodity exchanges and other companies serving the greenhouse gas emissions trading market in developed, emerging economies and developing countries.

With study after study showing the urgency of the climate crisis, wasting time on unproven solutions is a dangerous proposition. Climate organizers have suggested world leaders should be paying more attention regulating fossil fuels until they’re phased out. But real climate action—phasing out of using fossil fuels altogether—would hurt the oil industry’s bottom line, and IETA’s members, including some of the world’s largest polluters, are dues-paying members.

“That’s who they’re there to represent,” Madhusoodnan said. “And the less regulation, the less accountability that they have, the more free rein they have to deploy these market based mechanisms.” That means the big question for COP25 is whether the UN and Paris Agreement signatories are willing to take on the fossil fuel industry. If they don’t it looks like we’re headed for up to 4 degrees Celsius (7.2 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming above preindustrial levels, which the UN itself says would be ‘destructive’.

That same report warns that emissions have to come down roughly 7 percent a year for the next decade to avert catastrophic climate change. The history of carbon markets shows they’re unlikely to steer us down that road but could end up being a huge financial boon for the oil industry looking to keep fossil fuels (and profits) flowing.

Recommended: CO2 At Current Levels Will Cause A High Sea Rise: 16 Meters

“I think when the corporations and trade associations who are all over the space of that look at (carbon markets), they really see dollar signs in their eyes,” said Madhusoondan. “A big part of what’s at stake for the rules for implementing the Paris Agreement... is are they really going center giveaways to huge corporations, the ones that have most knowingly fueled this crisis? Or are they going to center real solutions?”

Update: COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry

Climate change: Major emitters accused of blocking progress at UN talks

Delegates from developing countries have reacted angrily to what they see as attempts to block progress at the COP25 meeting in Madrid. One negotiator said that the talks had failed to find agreement on a range of issues because of the blocking actions of some large emitters. Carlos Fuller from Belize said that Brazil, Saudi Arabia, India and China were ‘part of the problem’.

Recommended: Brazil Is Burning For Your Beef: Amazon’s Nature, Our Luxury

Ministers from all over the world have arrived in Madrid for the high-end negotiations that will determine the final outcome of this conference. Despite a huge climate demonstration on the streets of the Spanish capital last Friday, hopes of an ambitious declaration at COP25 have smacked straight into the realities of politics and entrenched positions.

People protest mad rid COP25
Protestors gathered outside the ongoing United Nations climate change meeting to demand more aggressive action to limit warming

The central aim of the meeting is to 'raise ambition' and set out a plan by which countries will put new climate pledges on the table before the end of next year. But already there are signs that some major emitters are trying to limit the scale of what can be achieved in Madrid.

Beat The Fossil Industry: Climate Urgency

politicians poster williams

"There's an effort right now to block the words 'climate urgency' in text from Brazil and Saudi Arabia, saying we haven't used these words before in the UN, so we can't use them now," said Jennifer Morgan, executive director of Greenpeace International. "This gap between what's happening on the outside and what's happening in the science, and this 'UN speak' that won't react and drive something is very frustrating."

Negotiators have said that the obstinacy of some countries was limiting agreement on non-contentious questions. "I am very disturbed and angry," said Carlos Fuller, the chief negotiator for the small island developing states group of countries. "At 2.30 this morning we couldn't agree to continue working on a transparency framework, that tells the world what each country is doing, we couldn't agree to keep working on it. That is ridiculous"

People protest COP25 Madrid

One issue that has caused a good deal of anger are the attempts by Brazil, China, India and Saudi Arabia to have the actions that were due to be completed before 2020 by richer nations, re-examined as part of the overall deal here in Madrid. Carlos Fuller says that this sort of backward focus by these major emitting countries doesn't help anyone to make progress.
"They are part of the problem, they are looking too much backward to say that the developed countries have not done what they should have done and hence we are not going to do the same thing," "I disagree with that totally. We are all on this one planet together. We need to recognise the mistakes of the past and not replicate them." Mr Fuller said this 'game of chicken' approach to the negotiations was a threat to the overall success of the talks.

Recommended: Anti-Smog Bikes: Could Pedal Power Clean China's Polluted Air?

The mood among many campaigners is low as there seems to be little hope of progress on the two major outstanding issues that need to resolved here. These are the question of carbon markets and the issue of loss and damage.
One of the key questions on carbon markets is the question of carrying over old credits. Some believe that if efforts by Brazil and others to carry forward billions of credits created under older, discredited schemes are successful, they could ‘bankrupt’ the entire Paris pact.

COP25: US Re-Joining The Paris Agreement

There were some positive signs in the conference with US presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg telling the meeting that his first action if he gets elected would be to re-join the Paris agreement. While there are still several days to go, there is hope that the presence of political figures such as Mr Bloomberg and new announcements by the European Union and others will help foster an ambitious agreement. But there is also deep concern that this might not happen.

"I hope that they support a coalition of countries that beat back the darker forces here in Madrid that want to hold the world back," said Jennifer Morgan from Greenpeace. "If not, it will be a moral failure," she said.

Before you go!

Recommended: Earth Matters. Nature And Us: What Was, What’s Left: Hope?

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Breaking News, as the world changes…

In our world, WhatsOrb refuses to turn away from the changes in our society and environment which succeeds each other at a rapid pace.

For WhatsOrb, publishing on the environment is a priority. We give reporting on climate, nature, waste, lifestyle and sustainable solutions the prominence it deserves.

At this turbulent time for ‘all’ species and our planet, we are determined to inform readers about threats, consequences and solutions based on facts, not on political prejudice or business interests.

WhatsOrb Breaking News will be published as soon as urgent events from around the world and startling sustainable innovations reach us.

If there is anything we should know and publish about, please send a note to: [email protected] or write your own story on: www.whatsorb.comthe only news site which gives you a ‘sustainable voice!’

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COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry

The stakes couldn’t be higher for COP25 (Conference of the Parties) . The United Nation’s (UN) own recent reports show that the only way we can avert climate disaster will be rapidly phasing out the use of fossil fuels. But the fossil fuel industry say they’ve got another solution to the climate crisis: carbon markets that allow companies to offset pollution by buying credits. Big Oil has had outsize influence on UN climate talks, particularly as an industry that caused the crisis we’re in. Beat The Fossil Industry: Carbon Markets Failure And their idea - which is enshrined in the Paris Agreement - to let markets work their magic has a huge catch. The carbon markets already in existence have so far failed to deliver meaningful cuts to greenhouse gas emissions. What’s more, they’ve also screwed people. Now the next five days have set up a tense struggle between major emitters and the people forced to contend with pollution and displacement. The largest problem with the markets discussion in international climate talks centers around human rights protections. Or more accurately, lack thereof. Recommended:  Climate Agreement Paris And The Denial Of President Trump The portion of the Paris Accord that outlines the role of carbon markets is Article 6. It’s widely regarded as the most controversial part of the whole agreement—nations didn’t even agree to include it until the final morning of 2015’s negotiations. And at last year’s climate talks, it was the only major segment that negotiators didn’t finalize. That’s why it’s at the top of this year’s agenda. What does cop25 stand for? 2019 UN Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP 25) 11-22 November 2019. Santiago, Chile. The United Nations Framework Convention (UNFCCC) is the international response to climate change. It is a treaty that establishes the basic obligations of the 196 Parties (States) plus the European Union to combat climate change. COP25: Paris Accord: Article 6 Traditionally, carbon markets allow nations and corporations that have big carbon footprints to purchase credits from those that with smaller ones or to offset them by investing in decarbonizing projects like sustainable energy or reforestation, instead of by polluting less. So perhaps it’s not surprising that oil companies are pushing for them. But their role in getting them on the agenda is still striking. Last year, the Intercept revealed that an executive from Shell said his company helped write Article 6. Oil companies and their trade associations have since gone all in pushing carbon markets, and they’ve been all over COP25. {youtube}                                              COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry                   Police Halt Activist-Led "Toxic Tour" of Spain's "Dirtiest" Corporate Polluters Sponsoring COP25 What Does The Paris Accord Say About Carbon Markets? What is the role of a carbon market? Carbon markets aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG, or “carbon”) emissions cost-effectively by setting limits on emissions and enabling the trading of emission units, which are instruments representing emission reductions. Article 6 has three operative paragraphs, two of which relate to carbon markets: Article 6.2 provides an accounting framework for international cooperation, such as linking the emissions-trading schemes of two or more countries (for example, linking the European Union cap-and-trade program with emissions-reduction transfers from Switzerland). It also allows for the international transfer of carbon credits between countries. Article 6.4 establishes a central UN mechanism to trade credits from emissions reductions generated through specific projects. For example, country A could pay for country B to build a wind farm instead of a coal plant. Emissions are reduced, country B benefits from the clean energy and country A gets credit for the reductions. Article 6.8 establishes a work program for non-market approaches, such as applying taxes to discourage emissions. For this explainer, we will focus on the carbon markets elements of Article 6. While Article 6 established these concepts in broad strokes and countries achieved some progress on defining the rules over the years, their final shape remains yet to be agreed. Finalizing these rules is a key agenda item for COP25. Recomended:  Climate Change; CO2 Emissions In Europe Don’t Matter Much What Benefits Could Carbon Markets Offer If Rules Are Designed Well? Carbon markets are a big deal, both in terms of potential emissions reductions and the cost savings they can generate. Half of countries’ initial NDCs (constituting 31% of global emissions) include the use of international cooperation through carbon markets. According to IETA, the potential benefits to cooperation under Article 6 include cost savings of $250 billion per year in 2030. International cooperation through carbon markets can bring additional public and private finance and catalyze emissions reductions in a country hosting the mitigation activity. And for purchasing or acquiring countries, using carbon markets enables access to a wider pool of opportunities to reduce emissions. This might lead to higher ambition, given that mitigation can be made more cost-effective, which provides flexibility. What Are The Biggest Risks If Rules On International Carbon Markets Are Designed Poorly? What is the meaning of carbon trading? Carbon trading is an approach used to control carbon dioxide (CO2) pollution by providing economic incentives for achieving emissions reductions. ... Companies that need to increase their allowance must buy credits from those who pollute less. The transfer of allowances is referred to as a trade. Without the right rules in place, Article 6 could actually weaken countries’ NDCs and increase global emissions. There are a few ways in which this could happen: Double-counting: For example, country A might build a wind farm and then sell the credits for those emissions reductions to country B, so now country B can count those emissions reductions as part of its progress to achieving its NDC. But if country A claims those same emissions reductions toward achieving its own NDC, that is double-counting. While the Paris Agreement is clear that double-counting must be avoided under Article 6, the extent to which double-counting is actually avoided depends on how accounting rules are operationalized. If emissions reductions are double-counted, it will potentially result in an increase in global emissions and weaken the already inadequate NDCs. Additionality: The way in which Article 6 is finalized will dictate whether emissions reductions under Article 6 will be additional to what would have occurred anyway. For example, if country A was already going to build that wind farm instead of a coal plant, here the carbon market didn’t offer a climate benefit. Without guidance ensuring additionality of emissions reductions, Article 6 rules could weaken NDCs. Failing to deliver increased ambition and progression: Article 6 can be designed in a way that either supports or hinders increased ambition for example, by determining whether subsequent NDCs will be incentivized to increase coverage of GHGs and sectors over time, and whether transfers of emissions reductions will result in greater emissions cuts. Beat The Fossil Industry: Corporate Sponsors Of The COP “The moment you really get off the metro stop by the conference, you start seeing advertisements from some of the corporate sponsors of the COP, which include some of Spain’s biggest polluters,” Sriram Madhusoodnan, Deputy Campaigns Manager for Corporate Accountability, told Earther in an interview from Madrid. “And within the COP itself, as you walk through, you see these massive pavilions from polluters and their trade associations... who are pushing their false solutions through the talks.” How does fuel pollute the environment? Gasoline use contributes to air pollution The vapors given off when gasoline evaporates and the substances produced when gasoline is burned (carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and unburned hydrocarbons) contribute to air pollution. Burning gasoline also produces carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. The International Emissions Trading Association (IETA), which represents oil and gas majors such as Shell Oil, BP, and Chevron, is rolling deep at the UN climate talks. They have 140 representatives at the conference, which is bigger than the EU’s entire delegation. And they’re holding an average of seven events every day at the conference. This year, they’re pushing a new initiative called “Markets for Nature Based Solutions” to trade carbon credits based on sustainable agriculture and forestation. Recommended:  Fossil Fuel Will Dominate Energy Use Through 2050: Globally “What does it mean for me if someone’s polluting really bad in my neighborhood, but then they can just go off and plant some trees in another country?” More nature sounds nice, but the impacts on communities where local projects get underway can cause widespread displacement. A World Bank and UN carbon offsetting program, for instance, was complicit in land grabs in Kenya where the government forced thousands of Sengwar indigenous people from their ancestral homes. The same program also forced locals away from their villages to make space for reforestation projects in Acre, Brazil. Both groups, it should be noted, had tiny carbon footprints. Recommended:  Amazon Water War: Fires, Hydro Dams, Climate Change S.O.S. And it’s not just forest offsets programs that have created these horrors: In one case under the Kyoto Protocol, the creation of a hydroelectric dam in Panama resulted in homes and agricultural lands being destroyed, and the ensuing protests and police brutality left three indigenous people dead. Offset programs also do nothing to undo environmental racism at the source of pollution. A 2018 study, for instance, showed that since California’s cap-and-trade system began in 2013, over half of the facilities involved emitted more greenhouse gases. Those polluting facilities, such as fossil fuel producers and power plants, were disproportionately located in low-income areas and communities of color. That exposed the people living there to more air pollution and risk of health problems that comes with it. “What does it mean for me if someone’s polluting really bad in my neighborhood, but then they can just go off and plant some trees in another country?” Cynthia Mellon, a representative of the Climate Justice Alliance, told Earther on the phone from Madrid. In finalizing Article 6, advocates have pushed nations to include human rights protections. But the latest drafts show they haven’t done so yet. Recommended:  Why Is Our Renewable Technology Powered By Child Labor? “That there is no explicit language on human rights and indigenous rights, just placeholders in brackets for ‘elements of Paris Agreement preamble,’” Madhusoodnan said. “That’s really concerning, because we know that over the second week, we’re going to see these negotiations really move into much more closed door sessions, where it’s going to be really hard to follow what’s happening.” What is the primary purpose of Kyoto Protocol? The Kyoto Protocol is a protocol of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and an international agreement that aims to reduce the emissions of six greenhouse gases that cause global warming Despite IETA’s optimistic language about carbon markets, in practice, these schemes have been rife with problems. When the European Union established a carbon market in 2005, it doled out so many free credits to polluters that it drove down the price of carbon and failed to make a dent in emissions. The global carbon market developed under the Kyoto Protocol—the precursor to the Paris Agreement—was no better. The so-called Clean Development Mechanism ended up funneling billions of dollars into projects that failed to reduce emissions 85 percent of the time. Recommended:  Who’s Greta Thunberg’s Rival On Climate Facts, Naomi Seibt? Membership to IETA is open to companies, business organizations and affiliated national and regional trading associations. Current Members include: greenhouse gas emitters, verifiers, certifiers, auditors, investors, insurers, traders, brokers, financial and commodity exchanges and other companies serving the greenhouse gas emissions trading market in developed, emerging economies and developing countries. With study after study showing the urgency of the climate crisis, wasting time on unproven solutions is a dangerous proposition. Climate organizers have suggested world leaders should be paying more attention regulating fossil fuels until they’re phased out. But real climate action—phasing out of using fossil fuels altogether—would hurt the oil industry’s bottom line, and IETA’s members, including some of the world’s largest polluters, are dues-paying members. “That’s who they’re there to represent,” Madhusoodnan said. “And the less regulation, the less accountability that they have, the more free rein they have to deploy these market based mechanisms.” That means the big question for COP25 is whether the UN and Paris Agreement signatories are willing to take on the fossil fuel industry. If they don’t it looks like we’re headed for up to 4 degrees Celsius (7.2 degrees Fahrenheit) of warming above preindustrial levels, which the UN itself says would be ‘destructive’. That same report warns that emissions have to come down roughly 7 percent a year for the next decade to avert catastrophic climate change. The history of carbon markets shows they’re unlikely to steer us down that road but could end up being a huge financial boon for the oil industry looking to keep fossil fuels (and profits) flowing. Recommended:  CO2 At Current Levels Will Cause A High Sea Rise: 16 Meters “I think when the corporations and trade associations who are all over the space of that look at (carbon markets), they really see dollar signs in their eyes,” said Madhusoondan. “A big part of what’s at stake for the rules for implementing the Paris Agreement... is are they really going center giveaways to huge corporations, the ones that have most knowingly fueled this crisis? Or are they going to center real solutions?” Update: COP25: Can Paris Accord Signatories Beat The Fossil Industry Climate change: Major emitters accused of blocking progress at UN talks Delegates from developing countries have reacted angrily to what they see as attempts to block progress at the COP25 meeting in Madrid. One negotiator said that the talks had failed to find agreement on a range of issues because of the blocking actions of some large emitters. Carlos Fuller from Belize said that Brazil, Saudi Arabia, India and China were ‘part of the problem’. Recommended:  Brazil Is Burning For Your Beef: Amazon’s Nature, Our Luxury Ministers from all over the world have arrived in Madrid for the high-end negotiations that will determine the final outcome of this conference. Despite a huge climate demonstration on the streets of the Spanish capital last Friday, hopes of an ambitious declaration at COP25 have smacked straight into the realities of politics and entrenched positions. Protestors gathered outside the ongoing United Nations climate change meeting to demand more aggressive action to limit warming The central aim of the meeting is to 'raise ambition' and set out a plan by which countries will put new climate pledges on the table before the end of next year. But already there are signs that some major emitters are trying to limit the scale of what can be achieved in Madrid. Beat The Fossil Industry: Climate Urgency "There's an effort right now to block the words 'climate urgency' in text from Brazil and Saudi Arabia, saying we haven't used these words before in the UN, so we can't use them now," said Jennifer Morgan, executive director of Greenpeace International. "This gap between what's happening on the outside and what's happening in the science, and this 'UN speak' that won't react and drive something is very frustrating." Negotiators have said that the obstinacy of some countries was limiting agreement on non-contentious questions. "I am very disturbed and angry," said Carlos Fuller, the chief negotiator for the small island developing states group of countries. "At 2.30 this morning we couldn't agree to continue working on a transparency framework, that tells the world what each country is doing, we couldn't agree to keep working on it. That is ridiculous" One issue that has caused a good deal of anger are the attempts by Brazil, China, India and Saudi Arabia to have the actions that were due to be completed before 2020 by richer nations, re-examined as part of the overall deal here in Madrid. Carlos Fuller says that this sort of backward focus by these major emitting countries doesn't help anyone to make progress. "They are part of the problem, they are looking too much backward to say that the developed countries have not done what they should have done and hence we are not going to do the same thing," "I disagree with that totally. We are all on this one planet together. We need to recognise the mistakes of the past and not replicate them." Mr Fuller said this 'game of chicken' approach to the negotiations was a threat to the overall success of the talks. Recommended:  Anti-Smog Bikes: Could Pedal Power Clean China's Polluted Air? The mood among many campaigners is low as there seems to be little hope of progress on the two major outstanding issues that need to resolved here. These are the question of carbon markets and the issue of loss and damage. One of the key questions on carbon markets is the question of carrying over old credits. Some believe that if efforts by Brazil and others to carry forward billions of credits created under older, discredited schemes are successful, they could ‘bankrupt’ the entire Paris pact. COP25: US Re-Joining The Paris Agreement There were some positive signs in the conference with US presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg telling the meeting that his first action if he gets elected would be to re-join the Paris agreement. While there are still several days to go, there is hope that the presence of political figures such as Mr Bloomberg and new announcements by the European Union and others will help foster an ambitious agreement. But there is also deep concern that this might not happen. "I hope that they support a coalition of countries that beat back the darker forces here in Madrid that want to hold the world back," said Jennifer Morgan from Greenpeace. "If not, it will be a moral failure," she said. Before you go! Recommended:  Earth Matters. Nature And Us: What Was, What’s Left: Hope? Did you find this an interesting article or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. 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