New Advisory Firm To Boost Carbon Emissions Trading In Africa

Jan 21 2009 | 11:14am ET

CarbonStream Africa, a joint venture between South Africa’s state-owned CEF Carbon SA and the Nordic company GreenStream Network, was launched Monday on in London.

CarbonStream Africa is an advisory company delivering comprehensive solutions and services for emission reduction projects, such as the United Nations’ Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Voluntary Offsetting.

The company’s stated goal is to assist project developers – in Africa and abroad – to optimize and secure the carbon revenue stream from emission reduction projects, guiding these projects from creation to sale.

CEO Deven Pillay says CarbonStream Africa is a unique concept in the CDM market, committed to contributing towards capacity building of CDM expertise in South Africa and Africa.

"Although lagging behind Asia and Latin America in terms of registered CDM projects, African nations are in a position to benefit from the rapid expansion of the global carbon markets and the increasing demand for carbon emission reductions,” says Pillay.

The CDM industry generates over $57 billion annually, but, according to the IRIN news service (part of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian affairs), African-based projects currently account for only 4% of that. Participants at the first all-African carbon forum in the fall of 2008 pointed to the lack of African investors in this market as a major constraint for the future development of the continent.

The UN Environment Program has invested US$30 million in building up local expertise in carbon trading in Africa, but only 28 of the more than 1,300 projects registered to date are African-based.

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