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Malcolm Turnbull

Climate love

Australian councils told to cut emissions rather than spend millions on overseas carbon offsets

Renewed questions are being asked about Australian councils’ use of international projects to offset local carbon emissions, off the back of a Guardian investigation that found 90% of rainforest credits issued by one leading company were likely worthless. The research into Verra, a world leader in the rapidly growing voluntary offsets market, found that the majority of rainforest offset credits were likely “phantom credits” and do not represent genuine carbon reductions. The company strongly disputes the studies’ conclusions, has strenuously defended its projects and challenged the methods used to undermine their credibility, saying they cannot capture the true impact of projects on the ground. They say this explains the difference between the credits it approves and the emission reductions estimated by scientists. But the revelations have energised critics of public entities for using offsets rather than concentrating on reducing their own emissions. Fifteen local governments in Australia, including those in central Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide, trade offsets through Verra’s registry platform, spending millions of dollars to claim carbon-neutral status. While the vast majority are not the rainforest credits that were the subject of the Guardian investigation, and its findings are not applicable to them, they are mainly for overseas-based projects, prompting questions about why local governments aren’t spending that money trying to reduce their own emissions. Brisbane city council, Australia’s largest local government, spent $6 million last year offsetting its emissions, including banking 130,000 tonnes of carbon emissions on a landfill gas recovery and power generation project in China. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/jan/24/australia-councils-sydney-melbourne-brisbane-buy-overseas-emissions-offsets

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26 more agrees trigger contact with the recipient

  • Kevin Waweru

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    72 w

    Prevention way better than cure..Great move here

    2
    • JOSEPH KIARII NDUNGU

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      72 w

      Curbing emissions is considered more effective as it directly reduces the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, while carbon offsetting is a way to compensate for emissions that cannot be reduced otherwise. Ideally, both strategies should be implemented simultaneously to effectively address climate change.

      • winnie nguru

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        •

        72 w

        Sure,they had better minimised on emissions.. hoping to see action

        • Gorffly mokua

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          •

          72 w

          Lets hope that this will be done.

          1
          • Saustine Lusanzu

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            72 w

            Great move

            4
            • Mama Margaret

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              72 w

              This is great for the environment.

              5
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