Carbon trading is again a failure. First we had the Chicago Climate Exchange die, now another scheme is dying per Google/Associated Press in their article titled ‘Carbon credits programs fail without climate bill.’
A national program that paid farmers millions of dollars for reducing greenhouse gasses has fizzled amid uncertainty about U.S. climate legislation
It seems they’re finding out the hard way what Al Gore and CCX already have discovered.
But carbon credits that fetched up to $7 a metric ton a few years ago are now nearly worthless, said Robert Carlson, president of the North Dakota Farmers Union. The group has 6 million tons worth of credits that have gone unsold, and while it will continue to try to sell those, no new credits will be issued after this year, Carlson said.
They earn credits to do certain things, which is not necessarily as it should be in my opinion.
Farmers, ranchers and landowners earned credits by growing grasses and trees or using no-till farming practices, in which seeds are injected into the soil to reduce the amount of dirt turned over and carbon released.
The article seems to leave some things amiss, which is the fact that good farmers generally already practice good farming practices anyway. It’s the way they make their living. Screwing up their land to the point where it’s unplantable isn’t going to make them any return on their investment.
It is not such a terrific idea to pay someone for something they already do. Based upon first-hand experience via my brother-in-law, who is a farmer in Kansas he already does much of this, as do his neighbors. He’s practiced no-till farming for at least the past 10 years and Kansas as it keeps the soil from blowing away ala the dust-bowl in 1930’s Oklahoma.
States like Kansas and even the USDA already have Conservation Reserve Programs that pay farmers to rotate crops, plant conservation type crops that reduce erosion/runoff/sedimentation, and there are programs where farmers get paid to let sections of their land go wild so hunters have places to hunt. which not only reduces erosion/runoff/sedimentation, but also reduces dust and use of fuel/fertilizer while providing more natural habitat for wild animals to live on.
While I’m not adverse to farmers making money, I do resent paying them (via higher crop prices) to do what they already do, or already should be doing, regardless if they get carbon credit money or not. Why? Because no matter what type of business you’re in, good business practices should prevail, that’s why.
Source: Google/Associated Press