Friday, June 11, 2010

Minister confirms Voluntary Market for farmers (Pinch yourself)

"Australian businesses, particularly farmers, will have the opportunity to develop offset credits from a range of activities that reduce emissions while providing other natural resource management benefits - such as the management of native vegetation and soils, and rehabilitation of rangelands." Greg Combe, Minister Assisting the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Penny Wong, said this to the Voluntary Carbon Markets Association National Conference yesterday. He confirmed that we are engaged in shaping the future, not building models of the past. In the clearest statement of the inevitable yet made by the Government he said that the Government was looking for 'firms to come forward with new approaches for other domestic offsets that are not currently counted towards our Kyoto target, including soil carbon and forestry.' He then made reference to the thought leaders in our field: "Given the ingenuity of stakeholders in this arena I am sure there will be many abatement proposals put forward for consideration"
The Carbon Coalition urges all Ministers and Policy advisers involved in choosing 'experts' to oversee the launching of the voluntary market to be aware that they are designing a solution for today to address problems of tomorrow, not building a mausoleum for yesterday. And should you falter at the threshold or fold under pressure - for there are many still actively whiteanting and libelling soil carbon and its promoters - be aware that a voluntary market standard is neither compulsory nor exclusive, nor can it negate the right of free individuals to enter into commercial transactions under other standards not sanctioned by governments or interest groups. Or even no standard at all. Should you fail to provide a workable mechanism, the market will emerge of its own accord. The people want action because they feel the urgency. The sudden collapse of support for the Rudd government after scrapping the CPRS said it all. The silent, despairing majority want someone to do something.

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