second largest carbon market in the world – kick-off

The official start for California’s Carbon Pollution Allowances purchase of permits at auction starts 14 November 2012. The occasion is described as historic and obliges the state’s biggest greenhouse gas emitters― like power plants and large manufacturers to participate and is expected to pump billions of dollars, in the next year, into California’s economy.

In a previous story California’s ‘carbon market mandate’ posted on 9 October 2012 by co2land it was said “Looking at what the Californian’s have done: They have taken the approach that big business can be encouraged from polluting the environment, and they can be simultaneously funding green industries through an auction permit system. The move is under the California state passed Assembly Bill 1532 (AB 1532), also known as the “carbon market mandate.” It is labeled as a boon for the state, environmentally and financially. Significant fees are levied to major corporate polluters, and those fees are invested into eco-friendly businesses that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The state aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by the year 2050.”

Then more recently on 12 Nov 2012, EcoWatch org posted  “Four Facts About California’s First-Ever Carbon Auction” focused on a post by Emily Reyna about the Environmental Defense Fund. In the preface she referenced President Obama’s remarks about action against a “warming planet” and said all eyes will be on California’s first ever cap-and-trade auction for pollution permits, and it will be the second largest carbon market in the world. This market is second only to the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme.

The risk for the auction is low according to the author and even individuals can buy if they wish, and a practice run was held in August 2012 to test the systems.

She offers more information about the nuts and bolts of the auction can be read here, and directly quoting the view of the author on the claims of the program:

“1. This is the best designed cap-and-trade program in the world
California has the good fortune of learning from predecessor cap-and-trade programs like the European Union Emissions Trading Platform, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, and the Acid Rain Program, just to name a few. Key elements of California’s program include giving free allowances to industry in the beginning years to help with transition; letting entities bank allowances for future use; and establishing an allowance reserve in case prices exceed a certain value. All help keep carbon prices more stable and make for a well-functioning market.

2. A price will be established for carbon, but that will vary as the program evolves
The California program will include auctions four times a year through 2020—32 more times after November 2012. As such, the number of participants, the settlement price and other results of the first auction may not necessarily predict the activity of future auctions. Over time, the market will change and both prices and participation will fluctuate as the cap reduces and businesses decide how best to participate.

3. Money from the auctions will be used to invest in California’s clean energy future
Proceeds from the auction must be invested in ways that further the goals of the law—the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (AB 32). Though these investments are scheduled to start in the next fiscal year, a specific investment plan is still underway and is being guided by two bills passed at the end of California’s legislative session. Likely project categories include renewable energy, energy efficiency, advanced vehicles and natural resource conservation. In addition, 25 percent of proceeds must be used in ways that benefit disadvantaged communities. These investments will boost clean tech in California, improve air quality and create jobs.

4. California’s leadership will serve as a launch pad for other programs
California is the ninth largest economy on the planet, and the world is watching. No state or country can stop climate change alone, but California’s environmental policies have a history of success and replication, including clean car, clean fuel and energy efficiency standards that have saved consumers across the U.S. hundreds of billions of dollars in avoided energy purchases. If the past is any indicator, California’s rich history of leading the nation on responses to critical environmental problems, while delivering wide ranging benefits, means the U.S. is on the brink of something special.

A public notice of the auction results will be released on Monday, Nov. 19, 2012, and will be posted to both the Air Resources Board and auction website.”

CO2Land org offers that you might like to visit EcoWatch’s CLIMATE CHANGE page for more related news on this topic.

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