Farewell CDM Watch – Welcome Carbon Market Watch! (Newsletter #1)

See Newsletter #1, November 2012

After an eventful three years, it is time to say farewell to CDM Watch and welcome Carbon Market Watch! From November 2012 Carbon Market Watch will continue the activities of CDM Watch and expand further to other carbon market initiatives. In the future, Carbon Market Watch will also scrutinise new market mechanisms, mechanisms to reduce emissions from degradation and deforestation (REDD), reforms of the EU-ETS and more. Visit our brand new website at www.carbonmarketwatch.org.

With this Newsletter, we would really like to thank all those who have supported CDM Watch in the past, in one way or the other, and contributed to the many exciting years we’ve had since CDM Watch was launched in 2009.

Within the first couple of months after CDM Watch started it was flooded with anonymous reports about undue practices related to various CDM projects. Concerns were made about how validators were carrying out their auditing jobs, how project developers were fiddling numbers to pass the additionality tests, and how local stakeholders were deliberately excluded from the stakeholder consultation processes. Actions by CDM Watch didn’t go unnoticed.  Last year, CDM Watch launched the CDM Watch Network which to date connects more than 600 NGOs and academics in more than 90 countries that share information and concerns about CDM projects and policies. CDM Watch has made the carbon market aware that CDM projects need to address social as well as environmental integrity.

With the support of dedicated environmental activists, CDM Watch brought evidence to light that showed that HFC-23 CDM projects were increasing their emissions to cash in on ever more carbon credits; thereby flooding the markets with cheap industrial gas offset credits. Because of that the European Union will ban these credits from May 2013. CDM Watch has also had an impact on stopping coal power projects from being registered under the CDM. Largely because of lobby efforts by CDM Watch, 10 CDM coal power projects have terminated their validation and no more projects are expected to get registered before the end of the year. As well, steps towards establishing a grievance mechanism and improvements on stakeholder consultation processes are under way.

The time has come for us to transition from CDM Watch to Carbon Market Watch. The aim is to continue the activities of CDM Watch and, at the same time, expand to scrutinise other carbon market initiatives, like new market mechanisms, the EU-ETS and mechanisms to reduce emissions from degradation and deforestation (REDD). Like CDM Watch, Carbon Market Watch will be active at the UN, in Europe and the Global South. We will also increase our outreach to civil society and environmental policy-makers and streamline our communication efforts. We just launched our new website at www.carbonmarketwatch.org. Please visit it and tell us what you think!

A former CDM Executive Board member once said “Proportionally manpower to impact, CDM Watch has been the most effective lobbyist in the carbon market world” and that’s exactly how we mean to continue our work as Carbon Market Watch. We’d like to thank everyone around the world who has worked hard to fight climate change by improving the social and environmental integrity of the CDM and other carbon market initiatives. CDM Watch’s successes have shown that we can make a difference! Let’s keep up the good work and proceed on new adventures.