Environment

Chinese oil, gas firms using carbon offsets to greenwash LNG purchases, Greenpeace says

Beijing, Nov 27 (EFE).- Greenpeace on Monday accused China’s oil and natural gas companies of using carbon credits to greenwash their imports of liquified natural gas (LNG) without committing to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.

The environmental organization published a report in which it analyzes the risks and shortcomings of carbon credits based on forestry projects, which are used by companies such as PetroChina, CNOOC, Shell, BP and TotalEnergies to buy or sell liquefied natural gas (LNG) as “carbon neutral.”

Carbon credits are a mechanism that allows carbon dioxide emissions to be offset in one location by financing projects that reduce or eliminate them in another location.

However, Greenpeace warns that “purchasing carbon offsets is not an evidence-based solution to climate change”, but rather “a smoke screen (used by oil and gas companies) to obscure their continued, redoubled carbon emissions.”

The organization also pointed out numerous “methodological issues” in forestry carbon offset projects in the Asian country.

Greenpeace analyzed 15 forestry carbon offset projects in China whose carbon credits had been used by oil companies and said that more than 80 percent of the projects planted tree species with a medium or high risk of catching fire.

The environmental organization said that these projects have inconsistent quality and sometimes pose risks to ecosystems.

“Carbon offsets have no place in net zero targets or any internal emissions reduction commitment,” Li Jiatong, Greenpeace’s representative in Beijing, said.

“The solution to climate change is to stop burning fossil fuels and rapidly transition to renewable energy sources,” Li added.

In September 2020, China, the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, said it aimed to reach the peak of its CO2 emissions before 2030 and carbon neutrality before 2060.

The Asian giant also pledged to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by at least 60 percent by 2030, compared to 2005 levels, according to a climate plan it presented in 2021.

It also aims to ensure that non-fossil fuels generate 25 percent of the country’s energy by 2030. EFE

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