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Carbon-trading supertanker adrift

Good news… In news just in, there’s another important sign that the momentum is shifting as Money goes in search of better prospects.

ICE cuts 50% of staff at Chicago Climate Exchange

The 1st round of layoffs began July 23, with more to come.  U.S. climate inaction is being blamed as main reason for cuts. Things are so bad, that ICE is collecting feedback on what to do with climate bourse

ICE just came in one day and started hacking away … We were told the company was restructuring,” said one source, who declined to be named.

Another said ICE cut around 20 roles at the CCX late last month, and at least another six high-level layoffs would come before next spring.

ICE bought Climate Exchange plc, owners of the CCX as well as London’s European Climate Exchange (ECX), the world’s largest marketplace for carbon credits, in April for 395 million pounds ($622 million), despite failed UN climate talks in Copenhagen last December and a lack of U.S. action on climate change.

Last week, ICE chairman and CEO Jeff Sprecher said the CCX may be pared due to a lack of profitability and that ICE is now seeking feedback about what to do with the exchange.

But prices for the carbon credits traded on the bourse since its 2003 launch, which were based on voluntary but legally binding emissions reduction commitments by its members, have crashed to around 10 cents a tonne from all-time highs of over $7 in 2008, and trading volumes have largely dried up.

Voluntary CO2 offset market participants shrink

LONDON, Aug 12 (Reuters) – Some major participants in the voluntary carbon market are shrinking after the United States failed to implement federal cap-and-trade legislation and the market stopped growing last year.

Intercontinental Exchange Inc. (ICE.N) has laid off staff at newly acquired Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), industry sources said this week; the head of MF Global’s voluntary markets desk departed in June ; and EcoSecurities ECO.L closed its U.S. office earlier this year.
The market slowed in 2009 after six consecutive years of growth due to the economic downturn and uncertainty about future climate legislation. It fell by 47 percent in value to $387 million in 2009, said a report by EcoSystem Marketplace and Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

For the full story on Reuters, click the headings.

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