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EIA attacks carbon credits at Euro Parliament

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) to address key European politicians and policy-makers to end the global trade in bogus HFC-23 carbon credits.

The hearing at the European Parliament in Brussels is seen as an opportunity to influence Member States’ views on a Commission proposal to ban the use of HFC-23 and N2O credits in Phase III of the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme – which runs from 2013-20 – before the Climate Change Committee votes on January 21.

Much of the debate is likely to focus on the timing of the ban. The European Commission has proposed a ban effective from January 1, 2013, which has been strongly resisted by a small number of industry players who have persuaded some governments of the need to delay the ban. Last month, Italy, Spain and a handful of other Member States expressed a desire to delay the prohibition until May.

EIA Carbon Credits video

EIA global environment campaign leader Fionnuala Walravens, who will be  speaking  as a civil society representative, alongside business leaders and European Commission climate chief Connie Hedegaard, says: “Companies opposing the January start have already reaped huge financial rewards from their investment in HFC projects. Why should European policy be compromised to expand their profits?

“HFC-23 offsets are hugely flawed and have no place in a functioning environmentally credible carbon market”

Walravens will argue that prolonging the use of industrial gas carbon credits in European carbon markets undermines Europe’s international climate negotiating position, which in Cancún called for increased abatement efforts from advanced developing countries.

EIA will also raise concerns about a potential loophole which may allow the banking of industrial credits for use in Phase III.

“The European Commission has proposed a full use ban on these corrupt, damaging carbon credits from 2013 onwards and that’s exactly what we need to happen, despite attempts to stall or undermine the process,” added Walravens.

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