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Raises questions about ethics behind carbon credits

Vox Pop

The May 13, 2021 issue of The Star News with its article about the carbon credit program which the county committees are considering got me thinking of the draft during the years of the 1960s. As has been written numerous times and as history has recorded, during the 1960s the draft process was constructed so that if you had money or connections, military service to the country could be bypassed.

It appears the carbon credit program is the same, it gives corporations, big business, wealthy, a means to by-pass any responsibilities to the planet, life diversity, all its people wherever and all future generations.

The program is such, send me money, my trees will be claimed as your carbon abatement and climate change control while allowing myself to continue pouring climate change gases into the atmosphere and poison the earth itself. Meanwhile reducing the carbon problem becomes and remains the problem of others.

Climate change has become the world’s first and biggest problem, there are no borders or boundaries to keep it in any given area, it moves as it pleases. It can be solved only if all on the planet work together. For these corporations, big business, wealthy or any other group who would purchase carbon exchanges nothing would need to happen to change, to improve, in their operations to reduce and stop its effects.

They will justify and exclude themselves from any climate change abatement simply because they sent money to Taylor County. If Taylor County would do nothing with that money to reduce the carbon imprint of its citizens there would be no gain in efforts to control this ever expanding problem.

It could become a different game if the county would decide to take the money and use this money to help with carbon abatement by its citizens or to explain it differently, help all its citizens move closer to a carbon free lifestyle (or as much as possible.) The options are many, maybe a solar field with expansion each year, help people change to all LED lighting, purchase more energy efficient household appliances, help pay for hookups for electric vehicles (it is happening), geo-thermal air conditioning and heating (also hot water), more energy efficient windows and doors and better home insulation packages for all older homes. My list is far from complete, add any options.

While this county would continue to receive any carbon exchange money, the programs could expand and be ever on-going.

For the citizens of Taylor County, the 15,000 acres of county forest is doing what nature designed it for, besides the life diversity it supports, it is using and storing carbon from the atmosphere. Any exchange of money cannot much improve its work. Would the forest and county do any better with the carbon offset credits besides allowing some wealthy whoever or whatever to continue to contaminate the air we breathe and need? Would we not do better for all the planet if we as a united group started to insist that all factions clean up their act?

Would we not do better if we insisted these corporations, big business, wealthy use any and all carbon exchange credit money to correct their carbon release problems within themselves?

The committee would be wise to pay attention to Jake Walcisak and Mike Bub. I would certainly hope the forest and county committee members do much hard thinking and practice strong ethics over money.

— Walter Tomcyzk, Dorchester