Carbon-Permit Slide Reflects Copenhagen Disappointment

algore-pollution-money-200GCS Editor’s note: This article reveals the true motivation behind the push for a “Copenhagen Protocol.”

By Keith Johnson

The failure of the United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen to produce a strong, binding agreement to cut carbon-dioxide emissions sowed gloom in European carbon markets Monday, with prices for carbon-emissions permits falling more than 8%.

There were also political echoes to the Copenhagen summit’s acrimonious conclusion. Some senior officials, including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown and British climate-change secretary Ed Miliband, criticized the current U.N. framework for addressing climate change, which requires consensus among more than 190 countries.

“Never again should we face the deadlock that threatened to pull down those talks,” Mr. Brown said Monday. “Never again should we let a global deal to move towards a greener future be held to ransom by only a handful of countries.”

The slumping price for carbon reflected disappointment among traders and businesses that the nonbinding Copenhagen Accord didn’t stipulate how much big countries such as the U.S. or China have to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases. The deal also left unresolved most of the big issues of how to curb emissions linked to climate change. On Tuesday, China’s Xinhua news agency quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu, taking issue with British complaints about the summit and China’s role.

Ms. Jiang said China urged developed countries to “fulfill their obligations to developing countries in an earnest way, and stay away from activities that hinder the international community’s cooperation in coping with climate change.”

Because the U.S., China and other major economies didn’t agree to binding emissions cuts, European countries didn’t increase their own pledges to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. European officials, who had considered curbing emissions by 30% from 1990 levels, instead maintained their target of a 20% reduction from 1990 levels by 2020.

That helped push prices for carbon permits to €12.41 ($17.73) per metric ton Monday, down from €13.58 Friday. Carbon-permit prices have fallen 14% since the beginning of the Copenhagen conference, a reflection of how expectations steadily fell as countries bickered over how much they would cut emissions and who would pay for it.

The European Union’s emissions-trading plan caps the amount of greenhouse gases that power companies and the like can emit. They can purchase carbon permits on the market in order to comply with emissions limits.

Investors in low-carbon or no-carbon energy technology, such as solar panels, wind turbines and nuclear power, say the prices for carbon permits must be much higher than current levels — in some cases, as much as €60 a ton — to make their systems cost-competitive with coal, oil or natural gas.

Read the rest of this story at Wall Street Journal.

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  • jim

    Excellent!!!! Hopefully these carbon credits will drop to $0.10 then all these greedy people holding the credits will drop off the real investment grid. As if carbon credits have anything to do with global warming or cooling. These are just another sorry excuse to bleed the population of their money.

  • Dan McGrath

    That’s the hope! Keep spreading the word (who needs MSM?) and we’ll crush those greedy curs!

  • paul wenum

    Agree 100%. The market will take care of this loser.

  • ray

    It is a frightening thought that even the BBC are interwoven with this scam ……………… shame on them …………. power to the people

  • Rob N. Hood

    I have to laugh – in-between the tears, of course – when I listen to regressives speak of the likes of Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in terms of Stalinesque autocrats or thuggish mafia bosses.

    I’m pretty sure that the elites who propagate this nonsense through multi-million dollar mouthpieces such as Limbaugh or Beck know just how absurd and contradictory to pesky reality those assertions are. But the regressive populous – as gullible and ill-informed a bunch of bots as you’ll find anywhere – well, they eat this stuff up whole hog.

    It’s really astonishing, because I can hardly think of three wimpier or more politically anemic drenched noodles than these Democratic buffoons, along with the rest of the pathetic Dem party. And also because America actually has had some pretty tough progressives in its history. Harry Truman would eat Harry Reid for breakfast, and still be hungry again before lunch. Lyndon Johnson could teach Barack Obama a few (thousand) things about how to move a legislative agenda through a balky Congress, and it wouldn’t involve getting his ass kicked by Joe Lieberman, I can tell you that. Franklin Roosevelt would surely be able to school Nancy Pelosi on the finer points of national leadership.

    Democrats have been playing the weakness game for nearly a half-century now, ever since Johnson was driven from office in 1968. That has meant very bad things for the country, which has now been all but completely captured by economic oligarchs, via their wholly-owned human levers in both parties.

    What is more remarkable is what it has meant for the Democratic Party, which seems incapable of being assertive even when it comes to preserving its own interests. And what it has meant for the Democrats is more or less that they lose elections, except when the default governing party of the GOP screws up so badly that the public has no other choice than to go with the feeble ones for a while. Republicans then get a few years to rehabilitate themselves, during which time they incessantly shred the Dems from the sidelines, and then the cycle begins anew.
    What the American people wanted:

    1) An end to stupid open ended “wars” – in reality, the Neocon dream of Neocolonialism. We wanted an end to the Chickenhawk Neocon wet dream of endless war.
    2) We wanted some friggen jobs.
    3) We want some affordable quality health care.

    The current spineless Dumbocrats botched what we the people wanted. So, the only question is, where do we go next? Answer: we need multiple parties on a more equal footing with the two Evil parties, instant run-offs, AND public financing of ALL national elections

  • Paul Wenum

    At least I give you credit for thinking out of the box.

  • Rob N. Hood

    I usually do- about time you notice, so thanks.

  • Flu-Bird

    Too bad that the liberals didnt get what they wanted and i hope all the enviromentalists who were in COPENHEGAN got their tender little green tosies all frostbitten

  • Rob N. Hood

    Yeah, it’s not like we rely on the planet for anything important. Damn enviros trying to keep the place clean. If God didn’t want it all messed up s/he wouldn’t have created humans.

  • paul wenum

    Rob, I have a question. Why the vindictive comments by liberals even when proven wrong or when they don’t get their way? I have that question asked by friends of mine quite often. Possibly you, the left wing person, can give us an unbiased response? Or can’t you? Can you let us know without being vindictive? We are patiently awaiting your answer.

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