No pun intended but for the world’s carbon community, times are looking a little black.
The global financial crisis, or GFC as it is being called this week during Australia’s largest ever carbon market gathering, is deeply troubling many participants. But a larger, more worrying issue remains “post 2012″.
This is when the Clean Development Mechanism under the current phase of the U.N. Kyoto Protocol runs out, along with the hundreds of CDM projects already approved and the 3,000 still awaiting approval by a U.N. board.
U.N. talks at the end of next year aim to agree on a broader replacement for Kyoto from 2013 and market players are hoping those talks don’t fail. Already there are fears that some rich nations will use the financial crisis as an excuse to say now is not the time to be negotiating tougher emissions curbs that might hurt industry and cost jobs.
“The volume of primary CDM activity is declining. Every month virtually this year, the number of new CDM transactions has been in decline. And that’s because the 2012 deadline is approaching and we’re running out of runway,” said Paul Bodnar, Manager of Carbon Markets at London-based Climate Change Capital.