New Green Economy

California’s Cap & Trade

The Associated Press reports that California’s largest greenhouse gas emitters will begin buying permits in a landmark “cap-and-trade” system designed to control emissions of heat-trapping gases and to spur investment in clean technologies.

For two years, large industrial emitters will receive 90% of their allowances free in a soft start. This is intended to give companies time to reduce emissions through new technologies or other means.

The cap, or number of allowances, will decline over time in an effort to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

While no one believes California’s cap-and-trade program alone will remedy climate change, the system is designed to show it can be done in the world’s ninth-largest economy and provide a blueprint for other governments, the board said.

See more of the story in Chem.Info.

Other cap and trade programs in the us include: http://www.epa.gov/captrade/

Examples of successful cap and trade programs include the nationwide Acid Rain Program and the regional NOx Budget Trading Program in the Northeast.
Additionally, EPA issued the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR) on March 10, 2005,
to build on the success of these programs and achieve significant additional emission reductions.

Here’s everything you need to know about California’s new program: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/capandtrade/capandtrade.htm

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The program is a central element of California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) and covers major sources of GHG emissions in the State such as refineries, power plants, industrial facilities, and transportation fuels. The regulation includes an enforceable GHG cap that will decline over time. ARB will distribute allowances, which are tradable permits, equal to the emission allowed under the cap.