Iceland Makes $2.6 Million Carbon Trade Deal With Slovakia

Iceland failed to meet its emissions targets set in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol between 2013 and 2020.

By Elías Thorsson - August 15, 2023
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Minister for the Environment, Energy and Climate Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarsson. Photo: EU/Lukasz Kobus

The Icelandic Ministry for the Environment, Energy and Climate announced Monday that it had struck a $2.6 million deal with Slovakia for the purchase of 3.4 million carbon credits. Iceland failed to meet its emissions targets set in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol between 2013 and 2020 and decided the deal was its best course of action.

 “This is a successful conclusion to a tricky situation,” Minister for the Environment, Energy and Climate Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarsson said. “It is unacceptable that Iceland fails to honor its commitments. We are among the world’s most ambitious countries when it comes to tackling the climate crisis.”

The minister, who took office in 2021, said this was an issue he had inherited from his predecessors and claimed it would have been preferable had Iceland managed to reach its commitments  by other means. 

“Of course it would be preferable if we had met our targets through land use change and forestry, but that can’t be changed now,” said Þórðarson.

The final global stocktake of the Kyoto Protocol will be conducted by UN Climate Change in September.