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Efficiency of carbon trading in doubt

Most carbon credits schemes set up to offset pollution are delivering 30 per cent less than first proposed, according to a new report.

Lord Stern, vice-chairman of the ratings firm IDEAglobal, will today (June 25th) launch a new ratings service similar to those on financial products for the carbon credit market.

The Carbon Ratings Agency launches the world's first independent carbon credit ratings service at the London Stock Exchange on Wednesday morning.

The CRA is the ratings subsidiary of IDEAcarbon.

Ian Johnson, chairman of IDEAcarbon and former vice-president for sustainable development at the World Bank, said the performance of the average project was likely to be probably less than 30 per cent compared to original forecasts.

He added that the ratings service was "a significant contribution? to improving the marketplace".

IDEAcarbon examined 25 carbon-offset projects run on a voluntary basis under the auspices of the clean development mechanism and joint implementation.

The survey found the 20 biggest credit providers - which make up three quarters of the market - are meeting predicted carbon savings.

But 300 smaller projects were delivering on average only just over 70 per cent of their predicted potential.

About 3,000 carbon-credit projects are currently up and running, with a combined worth of £6.7 billion, most at earlier stages of development.

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