More details about the Province of Aceh’s proposed spatial plan are emerging. The Jakarta Post reported this week that if the plan were approved in its current form, an area of 1.2 million hectares of forest would be converted “into plantation and mining areas and other purposes”.
Until there is an agreement at the UNFCCC level on REDD, carbon credits from REDD projects can only be traded on voluntary markets. Buyers of these carbon credits rely on independent certification schemes to tell the difference between “real” carbon credits and “cowboy” carbon credits.
Oliver Pye is a lecturer in South-Eeast Asian Studies at Bonn University, focussing on globalisation, social movements, and the social relations of nature in South-East Asia. An interview he did with me last year was recently published in the Austrian Journal of South-East Asian Studies.
Over the past few weeks, REDD-Monitor has posted a series of interviews with ten organisations involved in REDD in Indonesia. This post is a brief overview with some of the highlights from the interviews.
This film, produced by WALHI (Friends of the Earth Indonesia), starts with a villager in Aceh, Indonesia, explaining carbon trading. “I don’t really understand,” he says, “but I think it’s ‘cold air’ that may be sold to other countries.”
Here, as promised, is my presentation from last month’s meeting in Bangkok about carbon markets in Southeast Asia. My presentation contrasts the way the UN Environment Programme Finance Initiative and others still promote carbon trading despite the fact that the carbon markets have been in the doldrums for well over two years.
The mining industry has obvious reasons for being interested in REDD. The industry is responsible for vast greenhouse gas emissions. While the obvious way of reducing emissions is to reduce the amount of fossil fuels mined (an option that is never on the agenda at UN climate meetings), a more profitable option is to continue mining and “offset” the emissions by buying carbon credits.
This week, a Canadian mining company called East Asia Minerals Corporation, signed a Memorandum of Understanding to buy 50% of Carbon Conservation Pty Ltd. East Asia Minerals’ aim is simple: “Through the acquisition of a 50% equity interest in CC, the Company will develop a ‘green’ mining project which will use carbon and biodiversity offsets and the latest in environmentally friendly mining practices.”