Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Fall and Rise of the Carbon Coalition

Over at the Huffington Post, I've got some point of view on what I call the "Carbon Coalition" -- environmentalists and finance people working together to create market-based solutions to global warning. The Carbon Coalition suffered a defeat last tear when the Climate Bill failed in the Senate, but I think it needs to refocus its efforts on environmental services and regional cap-and-trade schemes. Check it out:

The idea of the environment as an asset, something that can be quantified in terms of wealth and then shared with investors, may horrify those who consider the great outdoors and all that's in it to be a collective human trust. But the fact is that most of what counts as an environmental asset is owned by someone. The problem is that ownership may not imply that the asset has been properly valued. This is what the Carbon Coalition, version 2.0, can now bring to the table. It assessed the worth of a negative that we wanted to reduce -- CO2 -- and then devised ways for that negative to be transformed into a positive by the reliable magic of markets. Regrettably, it did not succeed. But there's opportunity now to use the same kind of thinking to create environmentally beneficial markets based on the the ecosystem itself, and in the process surge toward a dynamic second act.

Read the whole thing here.

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