Stop Letting Polluters Off the Hook With Carbon Credit Shams

Target: David Parker, Chief of Clean Energy Regulator

Goal: Overhaul an ineffective carbon credit program to achieve the stated goal of reducing carbon emissions.

Many nations are using so-called carbon credits to incentivize big polluters not to worsen global warming. With these schemes, companies essentially purchase the right to pollute. They in turn agree to offset their emissions with measures that help reduce carbon: a leading greenhouse gas fueling the climate crisis. According to a whistleblower however, the carbon credit initiatives run by one prominent country are “a sham.”

Australia’s program focuses primarily on planting forests that can absorb and capture carbon. Companies also receive credits when they refrain from cutting down already-existing forests. If a company utilizes either of these measures, they are typically considered to be fulfilling their obligations and are therefore free to continue conducting their polluting operations essentially unhindered.

The problem with this approach, aside from a lack of active effort from the company to reduce its own emissions, is that most of these offsetting projects are reportedly making no difference at all. In fact, a former employee of the agency in charge of overseeing Australia’s carbon credit program claims that many areas where forests were supposed to be increased actually have less forestry now. In addition, these companies are getting brownie points for not logging in places they never intended to log.

Meanwhile, taxpayers are funding this billion-dollar hustle. Sign the petition below to demand Australia’s leadership revamp and make fully transparent its carbon reduction efforts.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Parker.

Has the world now reached a point where we must bribe people to do the right thing and reward them for not doing the wrong thing? A former member of the Emissions Reduction Assurance Committee largely characterizes Australia’s taxpayer-funded carbon credit scheme in this manner. He claims that “people are getting credits for not clearing forests that were never going to be cleared, they are getting credits for growing trees that are already there, they are getting credits for growing forests in places that will never sustain permanent forests and they are getting credits for operating electricity generators at large landfills that would have operated anyway.” This whistleblower also cites a troubling lack of transparency within the process.

You have committed to expanding carbon credit options and assured the program’s integrity but have offered no concrete backing for either assertion. Please release necessary findings to the public. Further, agree to an independent review and a commission that can truly ensure emissions reduction is not a money-grab but a vital environmental tool for combatting the planet’s most existential crisis.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Todd Trapani


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