Shanghai starts carbon emissions trading

The Chinese city of Shanghai launched its carbon trading scheme today (pictured) as it strives to cut its greenhouse gas emissions. Three trades for a total of 9,500 permits went […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The Chinese city of Shanghai launched its carbon trading scheme today (pictured) as it strives to cut its greenhouse gas emissions.

Three trades for a total of 9,500 permits went through in the first half-hour after the market opened. The first was sold for 27 yuan (£2.7) per metric ton, according to the Shanghai Environment and Energy Exchange.

Under the scheme, companies that exceed their quota of carbon emissions can buy unused allocations from others.

China is the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gas emissions but it has pledged to reduce its emissions per unit of GDP to 40-45% below 2005 levels by 2020.

Shanghai is the second Chinese city after Shenzhen to trade carbon to try to limit emissions, with the capital Beijing expected to follow later this week.

Under Shenzhen’s pilot programme, 635 companies – responsible for around 38% of the city’s emissions – face obligations to reduce their carbon intensity by 6.7% on average every year by 2015.