"Buying Carbon Offsets May Ease Eco-Guilt But Not Global Warming"

"TISZAKESZI, Hungary -- A forest was supposed to be here, inhaling carbon dioxide. But the fields are as empty as the promises of the carbon offsets that promoters said would help negate global warming with thousands of new trees near this Hungarian village.
An investigation by The Christian Science Monitor and the New England Center for Investigative Reporting has found that individuals and businesses who are feeding a $700 million global market in offsets are often buying vague promises instead of the reductions in greenhouse gases they expect.

They are buying into projects that are never completed, or paying for ones that would have been done anyhow, the investigation found. Their purchases are feeding middlemen and promoters seeking profits from green schemes that range from selling protection for existing trees to the promise of planting new ones that never thrive. In some cases, the offsets have consequences that their purchasers never foresaw, such as erecting windmills that force poor people off their farms."

Doug Struck reports for the Christian Science Monitor with others in a series that ran the week of April 20, 2010.

See Also:

"Is Dave Matthews' carbon offsets provider really carbon neutral?"

"Carbon offsets: Green project offends Indian farmers who lose land to windmills"

"Carbon offsets: Australia leads the pursuit of 'greenwashing'"

"Carbon offsets: How a Vatican forest failed to reduce global warming"

"Carbon offsets: Using the green cloak of 'certification' to sell"


Source: Christian Science Monitor, 04/27/2010