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Carbon Offset Credits

Energy and Climate Change written question – answered on 14th December 2011.

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Photo of Mark Lazarowicz Mark Lazarowicz Labour, Edinburgh North and Leith

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if the Government will take steps to prevent the double counting of carbon offset credits against both developed country targets and developing country pledges.

Photo of Gregory Barker Gregory Barker The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change

At the UN convention on climate change meeting in Durban, both developed and developing countries agreed to provide further clarification in 2012 of the mitigation pledges they have tabled to date. For developed countries this process will specifically include clarification of the assumptions and conditions related to the use of carbon credits in meeting pledges. The UK will fully engage in this process with a view to preventing any double counting of credits by advocating robust and comprehensive common accounting rules. Within the Kyoto protocol rules, emission reductions from carbon credits under the Clean Development Mechanism can only be used for compliance against developed country targets.

In Durban countries also recognised that, when considering the wider opportunities for using markets to enhance the cost-effectiveness of, and to promote, mitigation actions, such approaches:

“must meet standards that deliver, real, permanent, additional and verified mitigation outcomes, avoid double counting of effort, and achieve a net decrease and/avoidance of greenhouse gas emissions”(1).

(1) ‘Outcome of the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Long-term Cooperative Action under the Convention’, paragraph 79, p.15:

http://unfccc.int/resource/docs/2011/awglca14/eng/l04.pdf

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