Add pollution to the long list of advantages China enjoys in the new global economy. State-run press just announced that China and the UN have agreed to set up a carbon trading exchange in Beijing”the first in the developing world. Via Xinhuanet:
The proposed exchange is part of a program to pilot carbon trading in 12 western provinces, build capacity and provide policy input for the expansion of the carbon market and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in China.
The three-year program, estimated to cost 1.7 million U.S. dollars, will be partly financed by Arcelor Mittal, the world’s top steel maker, the United Nations said in a statement.
“Assisting China in its efforts to cope with the impact of global climate change to create more sustainable, less greenhouse-gas-intensive development paths is an important focus,” said Khalid Malik, the UN’s China coordinator. “A range of market-based instruments has now emerged to support this effort, with carbon trading emerging as a major opportunity.” [Full Text]
China already accounts for roughly a third of the carbon trading market, thanks in large part to the titanic quantities of carbon emissions it produces.
According to the article, carbon trading will be used to help impoverished communities in western China. But reports from earlier in the year suggest China might be directing its carbon revenues in other directions.