Deal involves 38,000 tonnes of carbon from FCO Ministers and staff
London, UK - November 13, 2006 - The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), a global partnership that facilitates financing for sustainable energy projects, and CO2e.com LLC, (CO2e), a leading broker within the global carbon markets, announced today their joint facilitation of a unique deal to offset carbon emissions generated from annual air travel by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 2004.
The deal is a first for REEEP within its newly established voluntary carbon offset facility for governments (REEEP Voluntary Carbon Offset Mechanism or 'VCO'); a first carbon offset transaction involving a governmental organisation through this mechanism, and a first for CO2e sourcing Certified Emission Reductions (CERs) for the European voluntary sector.
In this unique transaction of the REEEP VCO, carbon emissions from the UK FCO's air travel will be offset by a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project in South Africa. Offsetting carbon helps finance the growth of renewable energy in the developing countries. The UK government is the first government to offset air travel via the REEEP mechanism. Earlier this year, REEEP was contracted by the FCO to manage the process of offsetting all its aviation emissions - over 38,000 tonnes of carbon and other high altitude emissions generated by the air travel of FCO Ministers and staff based in the UK in 2004.
REEEP awarded CO2e the opportunity to facilitate the offset transaction having selected them based on their experience and flexibility to arrange the deal. The REEEP VCO provides a solid project selection procedure where in cooperation with REEEP, NGOs, CO2e and the respective government, the most appropriate and highest quality projects are selected for offsetting. Carbon credits were then purchased from South African wind developer, Genesis Eco-Energy (Pty) Ltd., for the first major travel offset programme by a government department.
The UK recently announced that it is also developing a Government Carbon Offsetting Fund (GCOF) to meet the Government's commitment to offset carbon dioxide emissions arising from official and Ministerial air travel from April 2006. This commitment was made by Prime Minister Tony Blair as part of the wider UK Sustainable Development Strategy, which was launched in March 2005. The Fund will deliver 255,000CERs by May 2009. UK Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett said, "Climate security is economic security. All governments should act to accelerate the reduction of carbon emissions."
Steve Drummond, Managing Director at CO2e said, "We're delighted to have the opportunity to work with REEEP and the UK government who are placing climate change at the heart of their policies. Reducing carbon emissions is the key to mitigating climate change and by acting now we could dramatically reduce the effect of climate change on our planet."
"It's an exciting marketplace when you consider the need for power in South Africa and our need for financing" said Davin Chown, Chief Operations Officer of Genesis Eco-Energy. "The sale of carbon credits to the UK will help provide us with financing for our wind project and will raise help raise awareness for further projects within the developing world and particularly Southern Africa.
NOTES TO EDITOR
An estimated 582 million tonnes of CO2 are created per year through worldwide air travel alone.
Greenhouse gases are emitted when fossil-fuelled energy is consumed. One tonne of carbon dioxide (CO2) has the same impact on climate change wherever in the world it is emitted - or saved. You can use less energy, travel less and use public transport, but some emissions are hard to avoid. However, you can offset the environmental impact of these emissions by reducing somewhere else.
The project referred to in the above press release involves construction, operation and maintenance of a grid connected wind energy facility at Jeffreys Bay in the Eastern Cape, South Africa with a total size of 10 MW. Genesis will be applying for Gold Standard CDM credits. The main objective of the project is to generate power from non-polluting sources thereby displacing electricity from the grid that is produced primarily from carbon intensive fossil fuels. The project aims to harness the natural resources in the region in support of sustainable development.
Electricity generated by the wind farm is supplied to a municipal substation through the municipal transmission grid and is metered at the developer's side.
The project will address a number of sustainable development objectives including:
· Contributing to the South African l Government's renewable energy targets as laid out in the White Paper on Renewable Energy;
· Contributing to meeting the electricity shortages in the Kouga municipal area and enhancing power quality for local industries in the area;
· Industrial and commercial development in the adjacent semi-rural farming areas particularly the dairy and brick-making industries;
· Strengthening the local grid.
The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) has two goals:
To assist developing countries who host CDM projects to achieve sustainable development;
To provide developed countries with flexibility for achieving their emission reduction targets, by allowing them to use credits from emission reducing projects undertaken in developing countries.
UK Developing Government Carbon Offsetting Fund
The UK is developing a Government Carbon Offsetting Fund (GCOF) to meet the Government's commitment to offset carbon dioxide emissions arising from official and Ministerial air travel from April 2006. This commitment was made by the Prime Minister as part of the wider UK Sustainable Development Strategy, which was launched in March 2005.
The GCOF has been developed through an Inter-Departmental Working Group and will be available for all central Government departments to offset emissions from official air travel in a simple and cost effective manner, which will also ensure high environmental integrity.
The central feature of the GCOF will be a portfolio of projects under the Kyoto Protocol Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), which will deliver the required emission reductions. The portfolio will offset the total estimated emissions of participating departments and agencies for a period of three years, from April 06 to April 09.
About Genesis Eco-Energy
Genesis Eco-Energy is a clean energy project development and energy services company that has a range of wind projects under development in South Africa. Genesis works with local communities, local government and emerging new energy companies in the South African market to develop innovative partnerships aimed at solving the energy supply problems. The suite of Genesis projects will also assist the South African government in meeting its renewable energy targets and will provide benefits to the local communities in which these projects are developed. Further information can be found at www.genesis-eco.com.
About the Foreign Office
The purpose of the FCO is to work for the United Kingdom's interests in a safe, just and prosperous world. For more detailed information about the FCO's objectives, how the work is funded, and how their success is measured, read about our Objectives and Resources. You can read more about the FCO's objective of Promoting the UK, its commercial and other interests, across the world.
To deliver the Government's international priorities and better public services, the FCO also needs to work closely with people and organisations in the UK. Read about who we work with in the UK to progress towards common goals.
The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP) is an active, global public-private partnership that structures policy and regulatory initiatives for clean energy, and facilitates financing for energy projects.
The partnership was launched by the UK government at the World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) in 2002. It now has over 32 governments as partners, including all G8 countries with the exception of Russia. In 2006, Argentina, Singapore, Switzerland and Romania have all joined the REEEP.
The partnership has funded more than 50 projects in 40 countries that remove market barriers to clean energy in the developing world and economies in transition. REEEP has recognised the need for governments to have a mechanism to lower their carbon footprints, and thus worked with the Gold Standard to create the Voluntary Carbon Offset mechanism.
REEEP's aim is to accelerate the integration of renewables into the energy mix and to advocate energy efficiency as a path to improved energy security and reduced carbon emissions, ensuring socio-economic benefits. Additional information on REEEP can be found at www.reeep.org.
CO2e.com, LLC. is a multinational company created to serve as the pre-eminent business-to-business resource for companies to understand, mitigate and manage the transition to a greenhouse gas constrained future. CO2e.com, LLC. is organised as CO2e.com Ltd., in the UK, CO2e.com (Canada) Company in Canada, and operates through Mitsui & Co. in Japan.
Our greenhouse gas brokerage is located in the UK, Brazil, Canada, Chile, India, Mexico and Japan (through its partnership with Mitsui), with local representation in many other countries through agency agreements. We broker European Allowances, CERs (under the Clean Development Mechanism), Verified Emission Reductions, AAUs, ERUs (under Joint Implementation), UK Allowances, and EU Allowances. We have brokered tens of millions of tonnes of greenhouse gas offsets globally. We have extensive experience in the global greenhouse gas market and have successfully facilitated transactions in the UK, Canada, the United States, Europe, Latin America, Asia and Africa. Additional information on CO2e.com can be found at www.co2e.com.