Letter: Carbon credits allow polluters to keep polluting

Posted

Editor of the Reformer,

There is a scheme afoot to sell the carbon reducing value of Vermont trees to carbon creators. It's not a new idea. It has been floating around since Agenda 21 or before, not necessarily in Vermont. What carbon credits amount to are a way for carbon emitters to buy the right to continue polluting. The bill uses the words "sequestration," a fancy way to say that if your trees are part of a carbon offset program, you lose all control of them.

The purchasers of the carbon eating Vermont trees likely will not be Vermont businesses. So, our forests and our responsible state policies would ALLOW polluters in other states to continue polluting by purchasing carbon credits.

Vermont is more than 50 percent public land. About half of that is state owned and half federal. So, where would the money go? And how would the state use that revenue? The reward to the state is financial, obviously, but how much are we talking? Do the risks justify the rewards?

Why would Vermonter landowners sell the use of their trees to polluters? If you participate in such a program, your ability to clear, thin or selectively log your property would be frozen.

I'd like to see statistics from a place where this has been implemented and working. Australia would be a good place to start.

Thank you,

Toni Powling

Newfane, Jan. 11

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