Climate Protector, Kelantan and REDD
Recently there is a huge investigation on the entrusted piece of forestland to Climate Protector Sdn Bhd by the Kelantan government, which was suspected to be used for similar purpose in order to attract investment for financial gain.
9th Jan 2017 Signing Ceremony at Perdana Hotel, Kota Bharu, Ke…
9th Jan 2017 Signing Ceremony at Perdana Hotel, Kota Bharu, Kelantan.Posted by Climate Protectors on 7hb Februari 2017
To give a brief background, Climate Protector Sdn Bhd is a company that claimed to specializes in renewable and sustainable energy. This company focuses on clean and green technology in the aim to provide a greener future. Dated back to 9th of Jan 2017, Climate Protectors reported to have successfully secured and signed a deal with the Kelantan Government for a concession period of 30 years over a forested area of 1.0 Million Acres, or a whooping 27% of total Kelantan land area 3.7 Million Acres.
They are entrusted with the land to conduct scientific calculation, valuation and verification report to determine carbon stocks for the designated state forest. The overall development goal of the program is to reduce forest emissions and to enhance carbon stocks in the forest while contributing to national sustainable development.
Supplier of Oxygen
In order to manage this land, Climate Protector has highlighted their intention that join task force will be formed to monitor the area, including the deployment of new technology such as drone and thermal scanning to protect the forest from illegal logging.
However, a simple search on the SSM business registration of this company, there are listed as a “supplier of oxygen equipment and services.” This clasifiation is actually pretty cheeky, technically not wrong as trees are natural ‘supplier of oxygen’.
Is this REDD or REDD+ ?
According to The Star Online, it was mentioned as well that Climate Protectors will contribute a sum of RM10mil within 24 months to the Kelantan state. Kelantan Menteri Besar Dato Haji Ahmad bin Yaakob mentioned in return, the firm will be rewarded with a 30-year concession to work on 360,000 ha of permanent forest reserve, to audit its carbon emissions under the programme – known as “Reducing Emissions From Deforestation and Forest Degradation” (REDD).
But our NRE Minister replied with a BIG NO! Kelantan government’s ‘carbon offsets’ agreement against REDD says Wan Junaidi. Another check on UN-REDD website proves Minister’s word is correct as neither Kelantan’s project nor Climate Protector are listed.
Climate Protectors will first audit the carbon credits available in the approved areas and then trade it at the international carbon credit stock exchange. The state government will take 55% of the profits with 45% going to the company.
From an investment point of view, the project was showing sign that it is too promising when it claims to worth of an almost USD 300 Million market cap based on a deal in a relative small market. Further investigation by Sahabat Alam Malaysia (SAM) highlighted on the suspicion in collection of funds from public, given that the carbon-offset scheme will derive returns once the carbon credits are sold in the European carbon market.
It’s vague to comprehend that Climate Protectors already assured a deal for the next 30 years with carbon trading, but still tapping into the capital market for funds. It soon gave an impression to public that the company is using the investment as an easy way to gain as much extra profits from the carbon credit trading or offset deal as possible because there weren’t any explanation from top management/Director amidst all that was happening.
Just when investment started flowing in and heated debate among public investors increased, on 23rd June 2017, Climate Protectors Sdn Bhd was red-flagged by BNM. On the 3rd July 2017, the Kelantan government was urged to reveal its next course of action after BNM red-flagged Climate Protector Sdn Bhd. This is because Climate Protector Sdn Bhd was suspected to be involved in financial services that are not covered by the laws administered by BNM.
Following that, on 5th July 2017, the Kelantan State Menteri Besar, Dato Haji Ahmad bin Yaakob clarified that they did not authorise Climate Protectors Sdn Bhd nor other companies to collect money in carrying out carbon trading project.
As mentioned by SAM, “This is beyond the business model of the voluntary carbon market which is payment for every tonne of carbon stock generated by a particular project according to an agreed price.” SAM called upon BNM to continue investigation and urged the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment as the focal point of the country to the UNFCCC to clarify their latest development with the Kelantan State Department and Climate Protector.
Research and Written by Merryn Choong