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Carter S. Roberts
President and CEO, World Wildlife Fund

Carter S. Roberts

Carter S. Roberts is president and CEO of the World Wildlife Fund, who also serves on the boards of the Grantham Institute for Climate Change, InterAction and the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy at Duke University. ALL POSTS

Offsets with safeguards can work

Offsets can play an important role in fighting climate change, if they help us make deeper, faster reductions at a lower cost, rather than slow the vitally needed transition to clean energy technologies. To make this happen, we need three safeguards: 

First, offsets should be paired with ambitious pollution reduction targets. The short term (2020) target in the House-passed climate bill fails to meet this standard and should be strengthened, but the longer term (2030, 2050) targets are stronger. 

Second, we should set a reasonable limit on the amount of offsets. The House bill would allow nearly 100 percent of the 2020 target to be met via offsets. This is far too high and could dangerously delay our transition to a cleaner energy sector. 

Third, high quality standards should be set for both domestic and international offsets.  A recent WWF-commissioned study of private sector investors found great interest in forest carbon offsets, but also cautioned that the market is looking for carbon investments that meet high standards, not cheap tons of questionable quality.  For example, international forestry offsets should be generated against national emissions baselines to avoid forest protected in one patch from being cut down somewhere else.  

If these three safeguards are in place, offsets can help unleash the power of private sector capital to achieve key reductions that would not have otherwise occurred and, in the process, help protect the life and health of our planet.

By Carter S. Roberts  |  October 23, 2009; 12:45 PM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Well-designed offsets needed | Next: Each approach has its own challenges


Please report offensive comments below.

Dude, you are deluded. The whole Albore thing is a scam. Open your eyes. Go to Central Park. There you will see gouges caused by glaciers. Go to Florida. On land in Florida you will see coral because in the past South Florida was under water.

The Earth's climate is highly variable. It's been that way for a long time. Over the past million years on multiple occasions sea levels have been 20 feet higher than they are today as well as 300 feet lower than they are today while having a 1 mile thick layer of ice across N. America and Eurasia. Moreover, this happened naturally without the help or hindrence of Man, GM, or Escalades.

I fully expect that Florida, New Orleans, etc. will be flooded sooner or later. I also expect a dramatic drop in sea levels when the glaciers return. However, this will all happen naturally without the help or hindrence of man.

I suggest that you open your eyes and your mind and see through the Albore Global Warming Climate Change scam.


Posted by: A1965bigdog | October 25, 2009 7:53 AM
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