Kyoto in Action: Gazprom and Dresdner Announce Carbon Trading Venture

A joint venture between the Russian energy group Gazprom and Germany’s Dresdner Bank was announced today. By investing in clean-tech and efficiency projects in Russia and other Eastern European countries, the duo plans to rack up carbon credits that can then be traded on international carbon markets. Expected to become a top player in carbon trading, the joint venture is expected to open up an estimated $19.4 billion market (€ 15bn).

In an effort to lower carbon emissions in the former Soviet bloc countries, a carbon credit is awarded for each ton of carbon dioxide avoided by companies operating in the region. Thus, interesting investment opportunities arise that generate carbon credits.

Gazprom stands to gain an estimated $2.6 billion (€2 bn) in carbon credits from optimizing its own operation - simply by fixing leaks and overhauling its own compressors. This is an example of how investments in clean technology are rewarded under the Kyoto protocol.

It’s not all peaches and cream though. There is an unfortunate side effect of decreased carbon emissions in the former Soviet bloc countries. Additional carbon credits flooding the European market – up to 10% by some estimates – will lower the price of carbon credits making it cheaper for European companies to emit green house gasses. ::Financial Times

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