China has been by far the biggest beneficiary of the so-called Clean Development Mechanism, a carbon trading system designed to direct funds from wealthy countries to developing nations to cut greenhouse gases.
China has earned 153m carbon credits, worth more than $1bn and making up almost half of the total issued under the UN-run programme in the past five years, according to a Financial Times analysis. The credits are currently trading at about $10-$15 each.
Industrial countries can meet part of their commitments under the 1997 Kyoto protocol to battle global warming by financing projects that mitigate emissions in developing nations. Projects only qualify for credits if the applicants prove they would not have been built anyway, a condition known as “additionality”.
[…] China-based consultants said the CDM’s board in Bonn began refusing approval for Chinese wind power projects in the middle of 2009, over concerns Beijing had deliberately lowered subsidies to make them eligible for funding.