Canada uses emissions trading as meeting offset

15 April 2002 – Canada’s Environment Minister, David Anderson, announced Friday the purchase of greenhouse gas emission reductions to make the recent G8 Environment Ministers meeting, April 12-14, 2002, emissions neutral.

Through the initiative, Environment Canada has purchased greenhouse gas emission reductions from an energy efficiency housing project in South Africa. The transaction was facilitated by greenhouse gas brokerage CO2e.com, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Cantor Fitzgerald Group.

“Canada is committed to finding innovative partnerships and solutions to fight the challenges of climate change,” said Anderson. “These projects demonstrate how the government and the private sector can partner to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while also investing in sustainable development.”

Environment Canada also offset greenhouse gases associated with the recent Health and Environment Ministers of the Americas meeting, March 4-5, 2002, through the purchase of emission reductions from a biomass power generation project in Brazil. Both projects reduce carbon dioxide and other air emissions, while delivering high sustainability and social benefits.

Greenhouse gas emissions associated with both meetings have been calculated at 1900 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents (including air travel, car travel and hotel accommodation). These emissions – comparable to the amount of greenhouse gases generated by 273,000 vehicle round-trip commutes – were neutralized through purchasing emission reductions from the South African and Brazilian emission reductions projects. Emission reductions will also be retired through the Voluntary Challenge and Registry Inc., Canada’s national greenhouse gas emissions registry.

Corinne Boone, Managing Director of CO2e.com said, “These projects illustrate the power that emissions trading brings to enabling greenhouse gas reductions. Environment Canada has taken a leadership role in demonstrating how emission reductions can be achieved by offsetting the emissions associated with international meetings. In addition, these trades show that investing in emission reductions can truly effect global environmental solutions.”

Dr Lilia Abron, President of PEER Africa (pty.) Ltd, the engineering firm working to implement the energy-efficient housing in South Africa, explained that funds from the sale of the emission reductions will be used to purchase ceilings, insulation, and other energy efficient features to be installed in the homes. “The new passive-solar designed homes and community facilities to be built under this project will provide significant improvements in the quality of life, health and well-being of the occupants,” said Dr. Abron. “At the same time, the energy efficient operation of these homes will help protect the environment by reducing the amount of greenhouse gases that would otherwise have been produced.”

Environment Canada’s purchase of Brazilian emission reductions for the recent Health and Environment Ministers of the Americas meeting, will support a renewable energy project, the Piratini, CGDE, Koblitz Energia S.A., where wood processing residues, which were formerly discarded, will now be used to generate electricity.

“This emissions trading illustrates the potential for integrating renewable energy projects with sustainable development in developing nations,” said Carlos de Mathias Martins Jr., Director of Ecoinvest, representing the biomass project in Brazil. “The international nature of this emissions trading demonstrates how countries and corporations can co-operate to attain meaningful and mutually agreeable environmental benefits.”

Environment Canada has taken numerous measures to ensure the G8 Environment Ministers meeting is environmentally sustainable – including the purchase of wind power from an Alberta energy company, Enmax, to offset electricity used during the meeting.

Canadian Environment Minister David Anderson will host G8 Environment Ministers to discuss several themes related to sustainable development. The meeting will provide valuable preparation for the World Summit on Sustainable Development taking place in Johannesburg, South Africa later this year.

CO2e.com is a multinational company providing market-based solutions to help companies manage the opportunities and risks of climate change. CO2e.com has a global team of greenhouse gas transaction specialists and marketplace technology experts supported by an extensive online presence at www.CO2e.com.


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