California Carbon Market Gets a Test Run

When California's carbon market launches in November, it will become the second-largest in the world. A test auction conducted this week with 150 of the companies to be involved in the program went off without a hitch.
August 31, 2012, 1pm PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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With the successful online test auction held yesterday, all systems seem ready to go for the launch of California's cap-and-trade carbon market this fall, reports Tim McDonnell. 

"The plan, which officials hope will put the country's most populous state on track to cut greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050, isn't the first carbon trading scheme in the U.S.: The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a collective of several northeastern states (including Massachusetts, which rejoined a few years after being forced out by then-Gov. Mitt Romney), has been auctioning carbon credits, called allowances, since 2008."

"But unlike RGGI, which applies only to power plants, California's plan extends to all sectors of the economy, which means businesses from paper mills, oil refineries, and universities to pharmaceutical manufacturers, steel mills, and food processors like PCP will have a stake in California's campaign against climate change," writes McDonnell. 

"'It's like some brave new adventure,' said Mona Schulman, a PCP vice president, as she waited for the fall of the digital gavel (the auction is held online) to start bidding. 'Everybody's in favor of clean air and the environment being healthy, but there's a lot of uncertainty down the road.'"

 

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Published on Friday, August 31, 2012 in Grist
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