Friday, August 3, 2007

Journalists I Respect: Inner City Press; Your Go-to for U.N. Carbon Offsets News

How's this "About Us" grab you:

Inner City Press, headquartered in the South Bronx of New York City, engages in investigations and journalism regarding human rights, transparency, corporate accountability, community reinvestment, predatory lending, environmental justice, fair housing, social exclusion and related topics. Inner City Press covers (and where applicable is accredited media at) the United Nations, the U.S. Federal Reserve Board, banking and insurance regulatory agencies, the Federal Communications Commission, and various courts.

Or this:

This web site provides information, resources and reporting on these and other issues, including creative writing and investigative journalism, as a successor to ICP’s initial newspaper publication.

ICP has published a (double) book on the topic of predatory lending. The Pittsburgh City Paper of Dec. 11, 2003, says that the "novel
Predatory Bender: A Story of Subprime Finance
may, in fact, be the first great American lending malfeasance novel."

Click here for that review; click here for sample chapters, an interactive map, and ordering information. Click here for a more colloquial presentation, in question and answer format.

Their juxtaposition of investigative financial journalism and local news just tickles me:

7/30/07 --
Bank Beat: Challenge to Royal Bank of Scotland / Santander / Fortis application for ABN Amro.
CRA: How many fair lending referrals?
Will Federal Reserve take note of Santander's dealings with sanctioned Sepah?
UN - Global: UN Mulls Banning Bloggers, Leaked Minutes Reveal, Fearing Coverage Not Easily Controlled.
Enviro: Wicheta toxins, Belarus' gas bill.
Bronx: Tattoo parlor opens, bike shop shuts down.

Sorry about the long intro. but I love these guys. Here's the carbon offset story:

UN's Climate Change Gurus Disagree on Cap and Trade in Debate that is Off-set for $2500

UNITED NATIONS, August 1 -- A split emerged Wednesday between two of UN-world's big guns on climate change, on the relative merits of carbon trading or taxation.

Tuesday, Jeffrey Sachs came down on the side of taxing carbon and subsidizing its sequestration. His comments were in line with doubts expressed by Joseph Stiglitz, who said that the "reason that I argue for a carbon tax is it's very difficult to decide on the allocation of emissions rights." In essence, corporations like Duke Energy, given emission rights, are free to sell any they don't use, and charge consumers for what they do use. Perhaps it's no surprise that the CEO of Duke Energy favors such a scheme: it's "heads I win, tails you lose." Click here for yesterday's story.

Yvo de Boer on Wednesday said that "business wants long-term certainty." In response to Inner City Press questioning of emissions trading, de Boer said, "I am skeptical on the notion of carbon taxation. I think it will take a long time to agree to and even longer to decide to give the tax proceeds to the United Nations to address climate change." Video here, from Minute 21:15 to 26:02.

Read the whole thing.

Here's ICP's home.