Carbon Credit Trading is a product of the" ... 1998 Kyoto Accords on global warming, which call for reducing worldwide CO2 emissions to below 1990 levels." (Blank, 2001). The plan is a method, the merits, and or lack of merits that shall be examined herein, to arrange for emissions to meet the indicated objective by essentially swapping dirty air, for clean air. Blank (2001) provides an illustration of the preceding as follows:
"Because some coal-burning utilities lack the technology to reduce emissions to Kyoto levels on their own, they are banking on greenhouse gas trades with farmers, who can "sequester" carbon (absorb it through the land) using such methods as no-till cultivation. That's sent a host of carbon brokers to Iowa, Nebraska and lllinois in search of credit deals. These carbon trades, though engineered by reputable brokerages, are totally unregulated and there are no guarantees that any government will officially recognize the credits. That hasn't prevented several major players in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, United Kingdom and the European Union from signing contracts."
The concepts involved in carbon credit trading require some explanation in order to understand the foundation as well as purpose of the plan. The preceding being the case, this examination shall explore the development of this approach to provide the historical as well as functional background from which to equate its benefits, shortcomings, potential, and other points, looking at Ireland as the principle example.