Carbon Credits: The Nicaraguan Email Scam Disguised as Mother Nature

No wonder they call much of the modern environmental movement it “going green” — there’s a ton of cash in it.

This “carbon credits” business will turn out to be one of the biggest scams since the “help me get my money out of Nicaragua” email that still goes around, and people still fall for.

If you’re not familiar with the concept, a “carbon credit” is when you pay somebody else, in some form or another, to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions as yours stay the same or rise. This is a practice called a “carbon offset” and it’s the favored denial system of wealthy blithering hypocrites.

An example of a ”carbon offset” would be this: When Al Gore burns X amount of natural gas to heat his swimming pool, he offsets this energy usage by investing in solar panels for another family, or in companies that will plant trees, etc. On the surface, and everywhere else for that matter, this might seem like a ridiculous concept. After all, what if we were to propose a ”murder offset” (i.e. a homicide is justified as long as the killer offsets the death by impregnating another person)? If that makes sense to you, then good, you’re ready to start “investing” in carbon credits.

There are now companies that specialize in carbon credits. Not so oddly enough, Al Gore owns one of these companies.

You’ll notice, however, that staunch environmentalists such as Sheryl Here’s part of what was unearthed, if you’ll pardon the expression:

A Financial Times investigation has uncovered widespread failings in the new markets for greenhouse gases, suggesting some organisations are paying for emissions reductions that do not take place.

Others are meanwhile making big profits from carbon trading for very small expenditure and in some cases for clean-ups that they would have made anyway.

The burgeoning regulated market for carbon credits is expected to more than double in size to about $68.2bn by 2010, with the unregulated voluntary sector rising to $4bn in the same period.

The FT investigation found:

— Widespread instances of people and organisations buying worthless credits that do not yield any reductions in carbon emissions.

— Industrial companies profiting from doing very little — or from gaining carbon credits on the basis of efficiency gains from which they have already benefited substantially.

— Brokers providing services of questionable or no value.

— A shortage of verification, making it difficult for buyers to assess the true value of carbon credits.

In other words, a scam. Nobody on the left would ever use that word, but that’s what it is.

Now if you don’t mind, I have to go ship some cash to a guy in Managua so he can afford to send me a bunch of money. It’s okay though, because I’m paying him to ship it via hybrid car and offsetting that by sending a check to Al Gore to not break wind for a day.


“Step right up and look what I’ve got here — that’s right, carbon credits…”

Author: Doug Powers

Doug Powers is a writer, editor and commentator covering news of the day from a conservative viewpoint with an occasional shot of irreverence and a chaser of snark. Townhall Media writer/editor. alum. Bowling novice. Long-suffering Detroit Lions fan. Contact: