Richard Sandor, chairman and C.E.O. of the Chicago Climate Exchange, seems to be fond of green. His business card and company stationery are trimmed in green; he wears green neckties. When he is photographed by the news media, there’s lots of green in the frame: green file folders, green paper, anything. For Sandor, it may be a way of signaling that the Chicago Climate Exchange – a commodities market for an unusual kind of commodity, greenhouse gas allowances – is more than just another business venture. It is, as he describes it, the engine of an environmental revolution. But of course, green is also the color of money. And Sandor, who has been called ‘the father of financial futures’ for his role in creating interest-rate futures in the 1970’s and who made a fortune during the boom years of the 80’s at Drexel Burnham Lambert, the firm of the junk-bond king Michael Milken, is also familiar with that particular shade. However high-minded in principle, the Chicago Climate Exchange is also about making a buck off the planet’s looming climate catastrophe. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. In fact, the trading of greenhouse gas allowances, also known as […]

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