Asia Pacific Programme of Activities off the ground for Standard Bank Group and CarbonSoft
8 December 2011

The partnership between Standard Bank Group and CarbonSoft, the London-based open source carbon-trading platform, have announced their first Asia Pacific Programme of Activities (PoA) for Light Emiting Diode (LED) lighting projects under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). 

This promises new opportunities for Australasian business and NGOs to participate in small-scale CDM projects in Indonesia, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, and other small island nations. 

This announcement comes on the recent launch into validation of CarbonSoft's East African PoA which will promote LED lighting projects in ten East African nations. CarbonSoft aims to have registered PoAs covering Southern Africa, West Africa, India, Bangladesh and Nepal by the end of 2012. 

With a principal focus on solar lamp micro-projects, CarbonSoft will provide a direct, low-cost route to the European and Australian carbon markets, enabling project developers to build low-carbon, highly sustainable development projects. 

Geoff Sinclair, Head of Carbon Trading at Standard Bank Group, said "We are pleased to be supporting this worthy initiative. This is our second investment in CarbonSoft's activities, reflecting our confidence in their performance. The programme has enormous sustainable development benefits, including reduced fuel bills for families; improved respiratory health; and reduced incidence of household fires, and it also makes great business sense." 

Alex Lauber, founding director and legal counsel for CarbonSoft said: "In building our capacity in the Asia Pacific region, our open source platform will support programmes that aim to provide thousands of families with safe, low cost, light from the sun, whilst removing the need to pay for fuels and other expensive forms of energy. The intersection of dramatic reductions in the price of small solar devices and the practical approaches to carbon revenue that are now available under the CDM have opened an opportunity for people without access to electricity to have clean available light, while simultaneously reducing pollution." 

The benefits of switching from kerosene fuelled lighting to solar lamps can enable families in East Africa to save up to 25% of their annual incomes, and tangibly improves health conditions by reducing burn injuries and avoiding inhalation of kerosene fumes. 

The CarbonSoft Asia Pacific PoA will begin in Indonesia with local environmental project managers, Hatlar Group, who plan to carry out a large scale distribution of solar lights in the Jakarta region.

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