Monday, April 14, 2008

World Bank burns credibility

Asia Times Online: A study released by an independent policy think-tank casts further doubts on the World Bank's ability to stay neutral in the global politics of climate change. "It is making money from causing the climate crisis and then turning around and claiming to solve it," charged Janet Redman, the study's lead author and a researcher at the Institute for Policy Studies. In releasing the 79-page report last week, Redman described the World Bank's role in the so-called carbon markets as "dangerously counterproductive" to international efforts to tackle climate change.

….The report, entitled "World Bank: Climate Profiteer", shows that instead of encouraging clean energy investors, the bank is lending much of its financial support to the fossil fuel industry. "It's playing both sides of the climate crisis," said Redman, noting that in just past two years the bank loaned no less than US$1.5 billion to companies investing in fossil fuels.

…The bank claims it is an "honest broker" of carbon deals, but the study's authors say their findings do not validate that assertion. "With little transparency around its credits and no formal accounting for its carbon debits that are accruing thanks to the World Bank loans," said Redman, "it is hard to say."

A 1911 Industrial Worker publication advocating industrial unionism, Wikimedia Commons

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