D DAVID PUBLISHING. Voluntary Carbon Market in Turkey. 1. Introduction. Fehiman Ciner 1 and Aydemir Akyurek 2

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1 Journal of Energy and Power Engineering 8 (2014) D DAVID PUBLISHING Fehiman Ciner 1 and Aydemir Akyurek 2 1. Department of Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Nigde University, Nigde 51240, Turkey 2. Quality and Research Development Department, Denizli Water and Wastewater Administration, Denizli 20070, Turkey Received: March 13, 2014 / Accepted: May 04, 2014 / Published: November 30, Abstract: Nowadays, global warming is a major environmental concern. Climate change is dominating the environmental agendas, especially in developed countries at first, but by now, around the world. Several initiatives have been undertaken to reduce the effect of increasing atmospheric GHGs (greenhouse gasses) concentrations. Emerging carbon emissions trade under the Kyoto Protocol serves to market the carbon quotas among the countries, thus, it helps to increase their level of GNP (gross national product). Emissions trade is being performed in the voluntary and compliant markets. Increasing interest in emission trade emerged carbon and energy exchanges markets in the world. Turkey is located in the voluntary markets, and organizations buying carbon offset credits in order to achieve their voluntary emission reduction goals. GS (gold standard) and VCS (verified carbon standard) are mainly being used to finance renewable energy projects in In the GS, there are 209 projects which are currently in the approval process or in the application, such as wind energy, hydroelectric power plant and biogas energy production. In addition to these, in the VCS, there are 61 projects which are mainly energy industries, in the approval process or in the application. Most environmental issues require long-term plans which include international cooperation, especially climate change. The Kyoto Protocol marks the beginning of a new era to combat global climate change. Voluntary markets are very popular and forty percent of the total global GS projects and around nine percent of VCS projects are implemented in These projects are initial steps for future implementations of compliant markets in Key words: Kyoto protocol, carbon markets, voluntary carbon trade, greenhouse gas, 1. Introduction Nowadays, global warming is a major environmental concern. Climate change is dominating the environmental agendas, especially in developed countries at first, but by now, around the world [1]. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change [2], 11 of the 12 years from 1995 through 2006 observed the warmest global surface temperature since In response, several initiatives have been undertaken to reduce the effect of increasing atmospheric GHGs (greenhouse gasses) concentrations. Several initiatives have been undertaken to reduce the effect of increasing atmospheric GHGs concentrations. For example, the Kyoto Protocol, a global-scale initiative under UNFCCC (the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change), Corresponding author: Fehiman Ciner, professor, research fields: water and wastewater treatment, and advanced oxidation processes. calls on industrialized nations to establish a legally binding commitment to reduce GHGs emissions [3]. With growing public awareness of environmental issues worldwide, a number of national governments have tightened their environmental regulations with respect to GHGs emissions [4, 5]. This may cause GHGs emitting companies to either cease operations in the future, or comply with the new regulations by reducing emissions. Under mandatory regulations in place, programs, such as cap and trade, provide a certain number of emission allowances to emitters every year, and they can either pollute up to the cap, or adopt alternative practices to reduce emission and thereby sell the remaining credits to others with emission levels exceeding the cap [3]. The market for carbon credits is undoubtedly growing rapidly and is already helping to drive a shift away from fossil fuel energy sources towards

2 1909 various renewable energy options and a low carbon economy [6]. Carbon markets are the systems where permits or allowances to emit GHGs or credits earned by not emitting GHGs (offsets) are traded. It is common to distinguish between voluntary carbon markets and regulated or compliant carbon markets. By introducing them separately, we also point at the differences that continue to exist in the size, organization, development and governance of these carbon markets [4]. The CDM (clean development mechanism) was launched in 1998 and operationalized in Under the CDM, industrialized countries (or organizations in developed countries) pay for projects that cut or avoid GHG emissions in less developed countries, by buying CERs (certified emission reductions) (one CER equals to one tco 2 e) that can be applied to meet their own GHG emission targets. In less than ten years, the CDM has developed into an institutionalized global trading mechanism and practice. The idea is that entities in recipient countries benefit from the infusion of advanced technology and investment that allow their factories or energy generation plants to operate more efficiently and/or cleanly; and that entities in developed countries reach their emission reduction targets economically efficiently. Moreover, the CDM is supposed to reward developing countries for reducing emissions, without punishing them if they fail to do so [1]. Turkey is located in the voluntary markets (Annex I, but not in Kyoto Annex B (26/CP.7). In this study, the case of voluntary carbon market in Turkey has been evaluated. The organizations which can not reduce the GHG emissions in their locations, are buying the carbon offset credits in order to achieve their voluntary emission reduction goals. 2. Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol Climate change is already a vital component of long-term national and international policies, implying that there is finally worldwide recognition of the sky s limited capacity to absorb GHG emissions [7, 8]. The Kyoto Protocol, which has set a timetable to control GHG emissions for countries under the UNFCCC, is viewed as a milestone in solving the climate change problem, which aims to do so through sequential negotiations and legally binding emission caps [7]. An interesting feature of the Kyoto Protocol is the flexibility that all ratifying countries can meet their obligations not just individually, but also jointly [8]. Because of the need for controlling GHG emissions, 184 parties have ratified the Kyoto Protocol as of May 2009 to reduce their collective GHG emissions by 5.2% compared to the year 1990 by the end of 2012 [9]. Since the Kyoto Protocol entered into force in February 2005, some countries that ratified the protocol have made substantial progress in development of the ETS (emission trading scheme) to reduce CO 2 (carbon dioxide) emissions [10]. Countries belonging to Annex I parties under the convention are obligated to reduce their GHG emissions to less than their 1990 level over the period from 2008 to The so-called Annex I parties include the industrialized countries that were members of the OECD (organization for economic co-operation and development) in 1992, plus countries with EIT (economies in transition) parties, Annex II parties which consist of the OECD members of Annex I, but not the EIT parties, are required to provide financial resources and transfer technology to EIT parties and developing countries in order to assist them in achieving their emissions reduction targets [11]. All ratifying countries under Kyoto should consider their responsibilities and capabilities in regard to global sustainable development. The principle of common, but differentiated responsibilities is well established for Annex I countries in terms of reductions in emissions by at least 5% based on 1990 levels. Under the current climate negotiations, developing countries do not have binding commitments to reduce GHGs emissions [8]. Turkey is located in the voluntary markets (Annex I, but not in Kyoto Annex B (26/CP.7).

3 Carbon Markets There are two markets for carbon offsets. In the larger, compliant market, companies, governments, or other entities buy carbon offsets in order to comply with caps on the total amount of CO 2 they are allowed to emit [12]. The voluntary markets remain a small, but important component of the overall carbon markets. Voluntary action by environmentally conscious individuals and organizations continues to send an important message on the need for action [13]. Voluntary market standards include the (verified carbon standard) and the GS (gold standard). CER stands for certified emissions reductions and VER stands for verified (or voluntary) emission reductions and one VER represents the successful emissions reduction equivalent to one ton of carbon dioxide equivalent (tco 2 e). In the year of 2008, volume of the compliance markets was 117,084 million USD and 499 million USD for voluntary markets [13]. In this study, the case of Turkey in voluntary carbon market has been evaluated. Turkey is located in the voluntary markets (Annex I, but not in Kyoto Annex B (26/CP.7). Existingly, GS and VCS are being used to finance mostly renewable energy projects, such as wind farms, hydroelectric power plants, and geothermal energy in 4. Voluntary Carbon Markets in Turkey Currently, two voluntary carbon offset standards are being used for verification and validation of VER projects in One of them is GS that mostly applied for wind farms and hydroelectric power plant projects. The other standard is VCS mostly applied for hydroelectric power plant projects. Since UNFCC CDM projects are used for compliant markets, this is not applicable to Initial projects for voluntary emission reductions in Turkey first started in the year of These projects have already gained carbon earnings and fourth validation periods are completed with monitoring report records. Wind farm projects and hydroelectric projects are the commonest source of carbon offsets in Turkey, and these projects are being registered for carbon credits. Since the green house impacts of methane is much more than the carbon dioxide and other GHGs, reduction of this gas is being compensated with much more carbon credits than the other renewable energy projects therefore landfill gas to energy projects gained increased sums of carbon credits. Twelve of the (total 171) GS projects are landfill gas to energy projects of Turkish Municipalities. As additional information, Turkish government encourages renewable energy projects by paying additional fees for the manufacturers that feeding of national electricity network. 4.1 GS Gold Standard Projects in Turkey There are totally 209 projects in implementation process under GS. Five hundred and thirty GS projects are being implemented throughout the world, projects that have the ratio of 40% registered in Turkey (Tables 1 and 2) [14, 15]. Table 1 GS project types, quantities and retired credits in Retired credits VCU Project type (voluntary carbon units) (tco 2 e) Biogas-cogeneration 5 Biogas electricity Biogas heat Biomass ,157 Energy efficiency industrial 3 Geothermal 5 Other (landfill gas, etc.) 10 2,239,582 Low impact hydro 1 Small hydroelectric power plant 82 Wind farms 90 1,624,909 Total 207 3,904,648 Please note this is not a complete listing of all registered projects, but only those that the account holder has requested are publicly available. Retirement of a unit does not necessarily constitute the offsetting of an environmental impact. Where a unit is retired on the registry, it is being taken out of circulation in the marketplace so that any environmental benefit that may underpin that unit cannot be dealt with again.

4 Verified Carbon Standard VCS Projects in Turkey There are totally 52 projects are in active status at VCS project database for Globally, 675 projects are under VCS registry, around 9% of these equal to 61 VCS projects being implemented in Turkey (Tables 3 and 4) [15, 16]. In the current situation, there is no limitation for voluntary emission reduction projects in Future developments (after 2012) in carbon markets for Turkey will be clarified in the short term period. Ongoing VER projects are providing capacity building, risk management, establishment of local know-how, and support for preparation in Turkey for future compliant markets [17]. Table 2 Project implementation status for GS projects in Project status Issued 40 Listed 105 Registered 37 Validated 26 Not defined 1 Total 209 Please note this is not a complete listing of all registered projects, but only those that the account holder has requested are publicly available. Table 3 VCS project types, quantities and retired credits in Project type Retired credits VCU (tco 2 e) Transport 1 Renewable energy 18 Energy industries renewable/non-rene ,893 wable sources Total ,893 Table 4 Project implementation status for VCS projects in Project status Under development Active 1 52 Under validation 7 Not defined 1 Total Conclusions Most environmental issues require long-term plans which include international cooperation, and climate change is in particular one such issues. The Kyoto Protocol marks the beginning of a new era to combat global climate change. Voluntary markets are very popular and forty percent of the total global Gold Standard projects and around nine percent of VCS projects are implemented in These projects are initial steps for future implementations of compliance markets in References [1] Mol, P. J. A Carbon Flows, Financial Markets and Climate Change Mitigation. Environmental Development 1 (1): [2] IPCC Climate Change 2007: Synthesis Report. The fourth assessment report, New York. [3] Poudyal, N. C., Siry, J. P., and Bowker, J. M Quality of Urban Forest Carbon Credits. Urban Forestry & Urban Greening 10 (3): [4] Bayon, R., Hawn, A., and Hamilton, K Voluntary Carbon Markets, 2nd ed. Virginia: Routledge. [5] FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) State of the World s Forests. Anual report, Rome. [6] Mathews, J. A How Carbon Credits Could Drive the Emergence of Renewable Energies. Energy Policy 36 (10): [7] Grubb, M. J., Hope, C., and Fouquet, R Climatic Implications of the Kyoto Protocol: The Contribution of International Spillover. Climate Change l (54): [8] Lo, S. F The Differing Capabilities to Respond to the Challenge of Climate Change across Annex Parties under the Kyoto Protocol. Environmental Science & Policy 13 (1): [9] UNFCCC Kyoto Protocol: Status of ratification. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Accessed December 21, /application/pdf/kp_ratification.pdf. [10] Kim, H. S., and Koo, W. W Factors Affecting the Carbon Allowance Marketing the US. Energy Policy 38 (4): [11] UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Accessed December 17,

5 1912 [12] Climate Bank Accessed December 17, [13] World Bank Accessed December 17, [14] Gold Standard Accessed December 17, [15] VCU (tco 2 e) Accessed December 17, &scolumn=project_name&sdir=&s=cp&q=turkey. [16] Verified Carbon Standard Accessed December 16, [17] Karabulut, Y Association of Electricity Producers, Voluntary Carbon Markets in the World and Accessed December 17, alari/dosya/yagmur_karabulut.pdf.

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