Interest in Carbon Market Growing Amid Shortcomings, UNFCCC Says

Interest is increasing in the United Nation’s Clean Development Mechanism, the world’s second-largest carbon market, an official from the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change said.

“I see the interest in CDM growing," David Abbass, the public information officer for the UNFCCC, said in an interview in Johannesburg today. "It’s evident in our pipeline. Even in a time of relative uncertainty, we still see the requests for validation rising,”

He was countering a statement yesterday by Robert Kelly, the regional technical adviser for North Africa at the UN Development Program, that the CDM is “barely making a dent” on the amount of greenhouse gases released in to the atmosphere.

“I don’t think anyone would say that the CDM hasn’t been successful. It’s created an international environmental currency. It’s the first tool of its kind,” Abbass said.

The Kyoto Protocol set emission caps for 38 countries through 2012, establishing the UN Clean Development Mechanism, or CDM, as a worldwide carbon market. It is a cornerstone of the group’s efforts to tackle global warming.

“It won’t be the only solution. If we look at the amount of emission reduction that needs to take place, then it’s correct, we need a scaled up CDM and we need other mechanisms. No-one ever imagined that CDM would be a silver bullet. It is however a wonderful tool that we have at our disposal now,” he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lauren van der Westhuizen in Cape Town at lvanderwesth@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net

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