Market signals

Katherine Ellison looks at today’s carbon offset market. The upshot: offsets are helpful (though there are skeptics when it comes to forestry offsets), but you may not be getting what you pay for.

I returned to Stanford’s Schneider to ask what kinds of offsets he might buy. “It’s legitimate to put windmills in if you displace fossil-fuel power,” he said. “It’s legitimate to put coal emissions underground if you could figure out how to make that permanent. Financing a gas plant in India if they were going to put in coal would also be good.” The key with all of these is they reduce carbon emissions at their source.