Carbon Trading Fraudsters in Europe Pocket $7 Billion

moneyFrom the UK Telegraph

Carbon trading fraudsters may have accounted for up to 90% of all market activity in some European countries, with criminals pocketing an estimated €5bn (£4.5bn) mainly in Britain, France, Spain, Denmark and Holland, according to Europol, the European law enforcement agency.

The revelation caused embarrassment for European Union negotiators at the Copenhagen climate change summit yesterday, where they have been pushing for an expansion of their system across the globe to penalise heavy emitters of carbon dioxide.

Rob Wainwright, the director of serious crime squad, said large-scale organised criminal activity had “endangered the credibility” of the current carbon trading system.
Yesterday, the UK delegation released a paper calling for the “expansion of carbon markets”, in order to use the profits for a fund to help developing nations tackle climate change.

Suspicions about an unprecedented level of carbon crime over the last 18 months have led investigators to believe criminals are using “missing trader” techniques to buy up carbon credits elsewhere in Europe where there is a cheaper rate of VAT.

Then they sell on the credits in the UK, charging the domestic rate, and pocket the difference. This has been commonplace among trading of very mobile commodities across European borders, such as phones, computer chips and cigarettes.

British investigators made seven arrests earlier this year over a suspected £38m VAT scam.

Read the rest of the column

3 Responses to Carbon Trading Fraudsters in Europe Pocket $7 Billion

  1. Rob N. Hood December 15, 2009 at 9:46 am #

    Dan why don’t you post updates on Copenhagen instead of this tired old stuff? We all agree Cap and Trade is bad. Copenhagen updates would be much more interesting.

    • Dan McGrath December 15, 2009 at 9:51 am #

      There hasn’t been a whole lot going on in Copenhagen (yet), but there are a few interesting tidbits I’ll dig up and post.

  2. Rob N. Hood December 15, 2009 at 2:12 pm #

    Obama might as well say he’s a Republican. he’s sure acting like one. I know you guys think he’s a raging Liberal, but so far nothing could be further from the truth- it’s been status quo all the way. Like Bush III. You should be happy.

    The president famously told bankers he stood between them and pitchforks. Presumably he meant the pitchforks are country rubes like myself and 250 million Americans who think that when troops give their lives to serve our nation, bankers who get huge bailouts might ask what they can do for our country, instead of enriching themselves to levels that historians will discuss for a hundred years.

    It is not the job of the president to protect the fat cats from the proper wrath of the people. It is the job of the president to protect the people from the improper abuse of the fat cats.

    And now: Congress may pass a healthcare bill that would help insurance CEOs making $10 million a year spend a generation raising premiums even further, while certain senators who take their money work to defeat a public option that would serve the nation and lower the deficit and that is supported by a majority of the people.

    And now: Drug companies that concluded a secret deal with the White House to raise drug prices by almost 10 percent work to defeat proposals to allow import of lower-priced drugs that would serve the consumer and lower the deficit, and that are supported by a majority of the people.

    And now: The House, in the service of fat-cat bankers, with the support of many Democrats and Republicans, defeated an amendment that would have allowed bankruptcy judges to save homeowners.

    And now, after the passage of a credit card bill that I stood virtually alone among Democrats in opposing, credit card companies raise rates to the skies. They gouge customers into the ground. They decimate small businesses. They destroy American jobs.

    And now: The Treasury secretary, who treats his office like Wall Street on the Potomac, schemes to give the bailout money back to the banks, without conditions, so they can loan it back to the people, or to themselves… without conditions…

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