Compensation for emissions
Offsetting to compensate for travel emissions
The greenhouse gas emissions arising from travel by Commission members to and from meetings of the Commission on Climate Change and Development will have a negative impact on our climate. The Commission through its secretariat has thus decided to purchase Certified Emission Credits (CERs) from a CDM project in Brazil to compensate for the emissions arising from travel to Commission meetings. The Commission has asked the Swedish Energy Agency for advice and help in calculating the amount of emissions and the amount of CERs to purchase. In addition a CDM project was chosen as the Government Offices has an established contact with the Swedish Energy Agency for these issues. CDM projects, although not perfect in their composition, are currently the best alternative to emissions compensation under the international convention.
The CDM project from which the CERs will be purchased, involves increasing efficiency at a bagasse (a renewable fuel source and biomass residue from sugarcane processing) cogeneration facility at Companhia Açucareira Vale do Rosário, a Brazilian sugar mill in the Sao Paolo region. The increased electricity surplus is sold to the local power utility to replace an equal amount of electricity that would have been dispatched from other sources, including fossil fuel based thermal plants. The project also contributes to enhancing the security of electricity production in the region. More information about the project can be found on the UNFCCC website .
Point Carbon organised a competition to determine the “Best CDM project” during the Carbon Market Insights conference in Amsterdam on 21 April 2004. The Vale do Rosário project won the award for “Best CDM Project 2004”, having received the majority of votes from both a panel of experts and the conference participants .
The greenhouse gas emissions arising from the air travel to Commission meetings and expert meetings are estimated at 202 tonnes of CO2 equivalents. The Commission will meet five times in various locations around the world, while the expert group expects to hold only one meeting at which all the experts will be present. The emissions related to travel by the Secretariat and the Chair of the Commission (Ms Gunilla Carlsson) are already included in the general agreement between the Government Offices and the Swedish Energy Agency and are therefore excluded from these estimates.