Two weeks ago, REDD-Monitor received an email offering 345 million carbon credits for sale. The carbon credits were from a REDD project in Brazil and a company based in Malta called MED Investment Operations is offering them for sale at US$6.80 each. Last week, I wrote about the companies in Malta behind this incredible offer: MED Investment Operations and The Equivest Alliance.
While I was researching these two companies in Malta, I received an email from Boniface Mburaburirwe. He had first written to REDD-Monitor informing me about this large number of REDD credits for sale. When I asked him for more details, he forwarded an email from Dr. Elena E. Gorshkova of MED Investment Operations and The Equivest Alliance.
In his most recent email, Mburaburirwe forwarded another email from Gorshkova, who in turn forwarded the responses to my questions from Daniel Azzopardi, CEO of MED Investment Operations. Here is the email in full:
From: Boniface Mburaburirwe
Date: 24 July 2016 at 15:33
Subject: Fwd: FW: Redd-M feedback
To: Chris Lang
Cc: Elena, Elena Gorshkova
Please find here below the answers to the questions you asked for in your previous email.
Looking forward to hearing from you soon.
Boniface Mburaburirwe BVM, MRCVS
———- Original Message ———-
From: “Dr. Elena E. Gorshkova”
To: Boniface Mburaburirwe
Date: 24 July 2016 at 11:12
Subject: FW: Redd-M feedback
Dear Mr. Boniface,
The answeres to the questions you have sent me from Cris.
Thank you for your email and appologies for the late reply.
We had tremendous back-log following our travels.
Please find the Answers to your questions below.
*Also the latest Bloomberg Screenshot attached.
*The Certificate of Carbon Units by Inbecas.
*Full Methodology Report
*Validation Reports translated.
*Which project are the carbon credits from, and in which country?
All nuclei of economic and sustainable development project MIDIAGEO are located in Brazil in the states of Mato Grosso , Pará and Amazonas.
*Who are the project developers?
MIDIAGEO GROUP LTD , ASSOCIATION OF ECOLOGICAL civil of LORENZO VALLEY BR (Association of Producers Rural)
*Is it a REDD project?
CAS – Environmental Credit Socioeconomic
The demand for increased agricultural production has led to expansion of production areas through deforestation in various regions of Brazil . In the face of this major environmental problem arises the MIDIAGEO REDD – BRAZIL solution.
This CAS Program – Environmental Credit Socioeconomic MIDIAGEO REDD – BRAZIL aims to generate income through the Preservation of Native Forests and increased production using smaller areas. Through the articulation of people and institutions in the pursuit of a sustainability standard to align the environmental, social and economic links consistently and that had resulted in a sustainable model of operation in their areas of coverage focused on environmental conservation and improvements in quality of life of farmers and regional development.
forest protection project uses a methodology that calculates through REDD , forest carbon stocks in areas with native forests of the region, ie of natural forests each property , not including forests planted for commercial purposes , differing from project REED ( Reducing emissions from Deforestation and Degradation ) not to worry about the emissions curve calculations, since the project is total preservation areas. They will also be included in the work at the stage of monitoring, prevention systems and adjusting for leaks ( leakages ) .
This model is recognized by international institutions such as Standard Conversion environmental assets of Forests in Transaction instruments. We focus viable agricultural activities in rural properties with the use of existing areas in the scope of local, avoiding the spread of deforestation and burning of forest reserves.
The development model proposed by the program provides substantial benefits that justify its existence as one of the enablers and drivers of the new socio-economic and environmental reality that has the main objective of sustainability:
· Zero deforestation of areas of group members,
· Local ecosystem preservation, allowing the preservation of Regularization fauna and environmental suitability of the property,
· Environmental Education – Introduction of environmental education and integration of existing programs such as good environmental practices
· Significant improvement of the economic reality of the group of producers with the mechanism would have an increase in income, employment generation and improvement of living conditions of the families involved,
Consolidation of productive chains in the region,
· Significant collection Expansion in the region,
· Creating a barrier to the expansion of pastures on the Amazon and Cerrado biomes ,
· Economic Viability of productive activities in line with local calling,
· Integration and interaction of the various productive sectors of the region minimizing conflicts of interest .
It is important to note that the benefits provided by this environmental tool will positively affect the bond market as it will provide another application alternative on the market allowing potential investors to acquire credits Environmental Socioeconomic MIDIAGEO REDD BRAZIL safely and transparently.
*What is the vintage of the carbon credits?
The MED Investment Operations ltd credits specifically, refer to
Vintage 2012 ( inventory)
*Who currently owns the carbon credits?
Until full payment of the amounts of credits, ownership of the rights to carbon credits belong to MIDIAGEO GROUP LTD ., The ownership rights transfer Term will be passed by compensation to MED INVESTMENT OPERATIONS LTD acting as Seller and in partnership agreement with MIDIAGEO GROUP LTD.
*Which registry are the credits on?
It was developed between local governments of Brazil SISA – Integrated Environmental Sustainability by InBECAS platform – Brazilian Institute of Carbon and Sustainable Actions stock.
*Are the carbon credits verified and certified?
Yes, validated and certified by INBECAS through technical cooperation terms of validation and licensing with SEMA , IBAMA and MMA
*Could you please send the verification and certification statements (or links to them). And the Project Design Document (PDD)?
All insusceptible document analysis in this step are available in the public link available on the FSIS platform in consultation with the passkey on the “Monitor credit.”
Which is a key that MED INVESTMENT OPERATIONS LTD has in order to gain access and transfer the credits to third parties post contract and payment.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t open the “Methodology Carbon Credit – REDD Brazil.pdf” file. When I clicked on the link I got the following message:
I wrote back to Mburaburirwe and Gorshkova asking them to give my Google account the necessary permission to read the file. So far, they have not done so.
Azzopardi’s response to my question, “Is it a REDD project?” is cut and pasted from MidiaGEO’s website. None of it is reassuring. The fact that REDD is mis-typed as “REED” suggests someone was in a hurry. The fact that following sentence makes no sense whatsoever is alarming:
“This model is recognized by international institutions such as Standard Conversion environmental assets of Forests in Transaction instruments.”
The response to my question about which registry the carbon credits are on is even more alarming. Azzopardi doesn’t say which registry the carbon credits are on. Instead he tells me it was developed by InBECAS. The carbon credits supposedly come from a project called d´Cerrado a´Amazonia REDD Brasil. When we look on the InBECAS website, we find that the project covers an area of 545,430 hectares.
The carbon credits were generated in 2012, so this very large REDD project has been around for several years. I eagerly anticipated reading more. But Google disappointed me:
As did Duckduckgo:
Azzopardi declined to answer my question about what “carbon credits already invested on Bloomberg” means. He didn’t send me a Project Design Document, instead giving me a “passkey” on the FSIS platform. Whatever that is.
Which leaves us with the validation report that Azzopardi sent. It’s nonsense. Here just some of the more obvious howlers:
- There is no project description.
- There is no information about the actions being carried out in the project area to reduce deforestation.
- The report makes no mention of any corrective action requests, information requests, or opportunities for improvement that the project developers had to carry out before the project could be validated.
- The report is very short. Verification reports are usually considerably longer. Here’s a more or less randomly selected sample, the shortest of which is 49 pages long. The document that Azzopardi sent me is 14 pages long.
- The validation was carried out by two consultants: Andréia N. Oliveira and Barbara Waldvogel. A search for their names and REDD reveals nothing about their careers as REDD consultants.
In the next instalment, REDD-Monitor will take a look at the D’Cerrado A’Amazonia REDD project in Brazil and the companies supposedly running the project.