Posts Tagged ‘Emissions trading’

Reality bites as EU politicians slowly back away from costly energy policy

May 7, 2013

Reuters reports that EU politicians are to meet at a summit to reassess energy policy in the post-fracking world  (and  - but this is not to be admitted under pain of being shunned – a post-global-warming reality). I just note that politicians will be the most adept at changing direction aand taking credit for moving away from global warming orthodoxy. Many scientists will find their own exit strategies but many will find it difficult to find the rationale to move away from what has become their religion and their livelihood. The least adept at embracing the new reality will the “climate bureaucrats” whose comfortable existence depends upon the global warming religion continuing in force. And all those who have milked the EU subsidy regime for all its worth will not be pleased but they will just move on to the next scam.

(Reuters) - EU heads of state and government will seek ways to limit the impact of energy costs on European competitiveness at a summit this month, a draft document seen by Reuters showed.

European industry says it is disadvantaged because of the price it pays for energy compared with the United States, where the shale gas revolution has drastically lowered costs.

The document ahead of the May 22 EU summit, which has energy and taxation on the agenda, calls for examination of the impact of energy prices and costs and action to limit the effects.

One option is developing the European Union’s own shale gas resources, although this is not mentioned directly. Instead, the draft refers to safe and sustainable development of “indigenous sources of energy”.

Europe’s very different geography and land ownership would make it hard for the European Union to rival the United States in shale gas, but the executive European Commission is working on a framework to guide prospectors.

The leaders are expected to urge the Commission to analyze energy prices and costs in member states “with a particular focus on the EU’s competitiveness” against global rivals.

The draft also points to massive investment costs in boosting power generation and networks as likely to drive up energy prices.

Arguments over energy costs have featured prominently in political debate ahead of German elections and played a part in blocking a Commission proposal to boost carbon prices on the EU market.

The Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), where carbon prices have sunk to record lows, is not on the draft agenda, but it could be debated on the sidelines of the summit, EU sources have said.

Efforts to repair that market are also a focus of attention for the European Parliament.

Europe has “wasted” €210 billion on carbon trading for almost zero impact

November 23, 2011

The Carbon Trading  scams around the world are coming undone (though Australia in it’s wisdom and its noble efforts to single-handedly save the world has just introduced a carbon tax). The Swiss Bank, UBS has produced a report for its investors with a devastating indictment about carbon trading “waste” in Europe and its bleak future.

The Australian: 

SWISS banking giant UBS says the European Union’s emissions trading scheme has cost the continent’s consumers $287 billion for “almost zero impact” on cutting carbon emissions, and has warned that the EU’s carbon pricing market is on the verge of a crash next year.

(more…)

Carbon trading fraudsters lobby hard to keep their playground unregulated

October 10, 2011

Stupidity (in introducing cabon trading in the first place) and greed among the carbon traders and speculators reigns supreme.

No surprise!

Reports calls for tougher regulation on carbon trading scheme

Reports calls for tougher regulation on carbon trading scheme: image clickgreen.org.uk

Clickgreen reports:

Finance sector lobbyists are pushing the European Commission to block tighter regulation of the EU’s carbon market, a new report from Corporate Europe Observatory and Carbon Trade Watch, published today, reveals. 

The Commission is currently reviewing regulation of the market following a number of fraud cases and leaked documents suggest that it will include carbon trading under the revised Market in Financial Instruments Directive.

But according to Letting the market play, lobbyists from the International Emissions Trading Association – the main body representing carbon traders – and BusinessEurope have sought to minimise new regulations, with BusinessEurope claiming “no further regulation” is needed. 

Report author Oscar Reyes said: “Carbon markets are a playground for fraudsters and speculators. Financial regulations are the Commission’s belated attempt to trim the excesses, but the problems lie at the core. Handing over environmental policy to traders has done nothing to address climate change.”  ……..

The report shows that while IETA has blamed a “lack of action from the side of the regulators” for the cases of carbon fraud, its lobby strategy has been driven by a desire to find new opportunities for speculation by whatever means are necessary. 

In January 2011, the European Commission halted trading on a key part of the carbon market after the latest in a series of large fraud cases was uncovered.  According to Carbon Trade Watch, less than a month later and with the suspension still partly in place, the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA, the main carbon traders’ lobby group) was privately insisting to Brussels officials that “there might be no need to regulate this market”.

One EU Carbon trading scam comes to trial: €5 billion just in lost taxes

August 16, 2011

The amounts of money sloshing around in the EU in carbon trading scams is mind-boggling and puts even drug money into the shade. The EU emissions trading scheme has been one of the major drivers of corruption in the last few years. The latest scam to come to trial is in Germany where just the tax evasion amounts to €5 billion ($7 billion). The total value of the carbon trades involved in this particular fraud probably exceed €50 billion. The frauds revealed so far are just a tiny fraction of all the succesful frauds that have been perpetrated – and all with the undoubted help (and connivance) of EU politicians.

It would not be surprising if the total cost of the EU emissions trading schemes (assuming  a conservative 80:20 principle) exceeded €250 billion. Eventually, the cost of all these carbon trades will have to be borne by EU taxpayers and electricity consumers.

Reuters reports:

A 5 billion euro tax fraud returned to haunt European Union’s emissions trading scheme on Monday as six individuals faced tax evasion charges at a trial which starts in Frankfurt. The case will haul the market’s multiple scandals back into the spotlight but is unlikely to implicate investment banks following a similar case against small firms in Britain.

In an activity which peaked in May 2009, traders bought carbon emissions permits in one country and sold them in another, charging for and then keeping the value-added tax (VAT) which they should have handed to tax authorities.

  • The total value of the fraud was at least 5 billion euros ($7.1 bln) in lost tax receipts, according to Europol
  • Charges have been brought against individuals at small firms. Europol said the fraud was linked to criminal networks operating outside the EU including the Middle East
  • The biggest swoop, initiated by Germany in early 2010, saw more than 2,500 officers involved across European and other countries
  • In Germany, prosecutors said in March that in addition to the six individuals charged, a further 170 suspects including seven Deutsche Bank employees were still under investigation and could be charged later
  • In Britain, the first trial of seven suspects risked delay as the investigation unearthed new evidence
  • It was easier to open an account on the carbon market registry than to open a bank account, allowing less reputable characters to participate.
  • As a new market, tax authorities in EU member states were slower to spot the fraud opportunity
  • The fraud was carried out on an unregulated spot market. Participants in such markets do not have to register with financial authorities, unlike in futures markets
  • As well as making it easier for fraudsters to gain entry, unregulated markets do not force strict know-your-client (KYC) rules on law-abiding participants meaning criminals escaped detection more easily
  • Officials at Paris-based Bluenext have not denied that their spot exchange was used by tax evaders but have maintained that they acted to stop the practice
  • French tax authorities are demanding 355 million euros ($505 million) from Bluenext, owned by NYSE Euronext, in unpaid VAT related to trades that occurred on the exchange
  • The EU’s head of tax, Algirdas Semeta, and of climate change, Connie Hedegaard, in June sent letters to EU states urging them to apply reverse tax charges which would remove the opportunity to buy EUAs VAT-free and then pocket the tax
  • The carbon market has suffered scandals besides VAT fraud, including a phishing attack, the circulation of used emissions permits and cyber theft of EUAs
  • The market has seen near-record low prices in recent weeks as the threat of a new downturn widens a glut in permits

UK Financial Regulator warns against carbon credit trading scams

August 8, 2011

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) is the regulator of the financial services industry in the UK and has issued a warning against carbon credit trading scams.

The vast sums of money expended on misguided carbon schemes based itself on the misguided attempts to reduce carbon emissions (to what end?) have of course ended up in a few pockets.

I’m tempted to just say “I told you so!!”

FSA Warning 

The Guardian – an ardent supporter of the AGW doctrine – writes:

Carbon credit trading schemes are set to take over from landbanking as a major scam hitting unwary investors. This week the Financial Services Authority issued its first consumer alert on the schemes following an unprecedented 10-fold surge in complaints and queries in July. The watchdog warns that the schemes are unregulated, so anyone can sell them, and UK authorities have no way of controlling their quality or validity.

Investors risk ending up with an overpriced credit which is virtually unsellable – just like the almost worthless agricultural acreage that landbankers push with the promise of planning permission in the near future.

At least one company that was selling land has moved its business model from persuading investors that land will soar in value to concentrating on carbon schemes. 

Jonathan Phelan, head of the unauthorised business department at the FSA, says: “Since June, we’ve seen a significant rise in consumers reporting carbon credit trading schemes to the FSA. While carbon credit trading schemes don’t automatically amount to investment schemes that require FSA authorisation, we are concerned that the majority of the firms being reported to us are using high pressure sales tactics and targeting vulnerable consumers with little or no knowledge of commodities and derivatives trading.

“We suspect that many of these firms are essentially overseas boiler rooms or landbanking firms simply selling a highly dubious new investment product and jumping upon the green/eco-friendly bandwagon. We strongly recommend that consumers seek advice from an FSA-authorised independent financial adviser before getting involved in the carbon credit trading market.”

Well, I told you so.

Carbon dioxide rip-off has cost Australia $5.5 billion – so far

February 14, 2011

With easy money like this floating around and waiting to be siphoned off it is not difficult to see why the global warming fraud continues! And of course these $5.5 billion are small change compared to the amounts that have been scammed in Europe.

And to make it worse, carbon dioxide emissions are a little less than insignificant for global temperatures.

The Sydney Morning Herald:

Billions blown on carbon schemes

SUCCESSIVE federal governments have spent more than $5.5 billion over the past decade on climate change programs that are delivering only small reductions in greenhouse gas emissions at unusually high costs for taxpayers and the economy.

An analysis by the Herald of government schemes designed to cut emissions by direct spending or regulatory intervention reveals they have cost an average of $168 for each tonne of carbon dioxide abated. ……

The analysis of 17 programs with a total cost of $5.62 billion shows many of the schemes are at odds with the goal of tackling climate change at the lowest cost to the economy. ………

The weighted average cost of the 17 programs was $168 a tonne. They will deliver about 25 million tonnes of carbon abatement in 2020 – less than 10 per cent of that needed to meet the government’s target of reducing emissions in 2020 by 5 per cent on 2000 levels.

The worst offenders have included Labor’s rebates for rooftop solar panels, which cost $300 or more for every tonne of carbon abated, and the Howard government’s remote renewable power generation scheme, which paid up to $340 for each tonne.

Read the article.

European commission extends carbon market freeze indefinitely

January 27, 2011

And about time too.

A raft of countries (including Japan, Australia, Canada and the United States) have already shelved cap and trade schemes.

Of course the fundamental fraud that is carbon trading goes much deeper than just the  recent thefts of credits. Hopefully it will never be revived!

image wattsupwiththat.com

The Guardian:

The European commission’s emergency suspension last week of trading in carbon allowances to put a halt to rampant theft of credits by hackers has been extended indefinitely until countries can prove their systems are protected from further fraud.

While the suspension had been expected to end last night, Brussels now says that the freeze in trades had been imposed to give the commission executive some breathing space to figure out what to do.

“The suspension last week was only a transitional measure to give the commission and member states the time to assess the situation and decide the way forward,” the commission’s climate spokeswoman, Maria Kokkonen, said. “Okay, this hurts, but it must hurt in order to make things more secure, more robust. Evolution through crisis.”

A total of 30 countries that participate in the Emissions Trading Scheme, Europe’s flagship climate change policy, must now send assessments of the situation performed by independent monitors. On 19 January, the commission suspended “spot” trading in allowances after up to 2m permits worth around €30m were stolen by computer hackers. Brussels said that half the participating countries were not sufficiently secure. Permits went missing in Austria, the Czech Republic and Greece.

Japan shelves carbon emissions trading scheme

December 29, 2010

Japan joins the growing list of nations who have shelved, postponed or cancelled carbon trading schemes (and there is not a single carbon trading scheme anywhere which is not built on fraud).

Reuters reports:

Japan postponed plans for a national emissions trading scheme on Tuesday, bowing to powerful business groups that warned of job losses as they compete against overseas rivals facing fewer emissions regulations.

The government has submitted a climate bill to parliament that includes a one-year deadline to design a national trading scheme. After Tuesday’s delay, that bill faces revisions in the next parliamentary session that begins in January.

The decision is a blow to the European Union’s hopes that other top greenhouse gas polluters will introduce emissions trading schemes and follows setbacks to similar efforts in the United States and Australia.

A U.N. meeting in Cancun, Mexico, this month failed to clear uncertainty over a global climate framework beyond 2012. This is likely to cause some big emitters to take their time in rolling out tougher greenhouse gas regulations, particularly for carbon dioxide (CO2) from burning fossil fuels such as coal and oil.

Neighboring South Korea has delayed the introduction of its emissions trading laws into parliament until February because of business concerns.

The Cancun hype begins – but it is all about money not climate

November 22, 2010

With one week left before the Cancun circus begins (UN/ IPCC Climate Conference from 29th November to 10th December), the mainstream media hype has begun.

Global CO2 expected to rise to record levels screams the Daily Telegraph. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are expected to reach record levels this year, according to a new study, despite the recession and global efforts to reduce greenhouse gases – but what that has to do with climate is uncertain. No doubt it has a great deal to do with pricing of the Carbon Trading market. As The Telegraph points out (inadvertently perhaps) this is just hype timed to come just before the UN jamboree.

The results of the study by the Global Carbon Project will be used to put pressure on environment ministers meeting in Cancun, Mexico this month for the latest UN meeting to come to a global agreement on cutting emissions.

The Cancun meeting itself is all about money and Carbon Trading. The collapse of the Chicago exchange and the growing realisation in Europe that Carbon Trading is just a scam is leading all those with a vested interest in carbon pricing to raise the spectres of carbon dioxide again.  Hopefully these efforts will be as useless as at Copenhagen but some “trading” being introduced through the back door is always a possibility.

The two main “money flows” that Cancun is concerned with is the carbon trading fraud and the diversion of funds to “developing” countries to reduce their emissions of carbon dioxide. Just as with the Nagoya biodiversity conference a key objective is the redistribution of wealth. In fact biodiversity and climate are merely convenient scare stories which can act as vehicles for arranging for the flow of funds. A UN IPCC official admitted as much when talking about climate policy:

OTTMAR EDENHOFER, UN IPCC OFFICIAL: “That will change immediately if global emission rights are distributed. If this happens, on a per capita basis, then Africa will be the big winner, and huge amounts of money will flow there. This will have enormous implications for development policy. And it will raise the question if these countries can deal responsibly with so much money at all”.


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