Industrialized nations making up for their environmental shortcomings by investing in clean practices in developing nations is comparable to the medieval Catholic practice of paying for your sins, Denmark’s former Environment and Energy Minister, Svend Auken said.
The comment came before his opening presentation as a keynote speaker at the Beyond Kyoto Conference being held in Aarhus.
Auken spoke specifically about the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) that allows industrialized countries to achieve reductions by implementing ‘green’ development projects both internationally and domestically.
“CDM was one of the horrors to come out of Kyoto. The perversity of it is that it was made for alleviating the burden of developed countries, to get them off the hook,” he said.
The CDM is one of three ‘flexibility mechanisms’ introduced in Kyoto, the other two being Joint Implementation (JI) and Emissions Trading (ET).
“I was a very strong opponent of all of the flexibility mechanisms at Kyoto, and unfortunately I was proven right,” said Auken.
“Of course we need clean development, but we need to be sincere about it,” he said.
By Gemma Black