BEIJING, March 19 A draft plan for a carbon
market in Chongqing proposed that around 250 of its biggest
companies be required to cut their carbon dioxide emissions by
more than 4 percent per year starting in 2014.
China, the world's biggest carbon emitter, aims to cut
greenhouse gas emissions 40-45 percent from 2005 levels by 2020.
Chongqing is one of seven cities and provinces picked to set up
pilot carbon markets ahead of the launch of the nationwide
scheme later in the decade.
The draft plan, drawn up by Chongqing International
Consulting Company and set to be approved by the city government
next week, outlined detailed rules for its carbon market,
expected to launch next month.
Under the scheme, emission caps will be backdated to Jan. 1,
2013, but for 2013 companies would receive up to 134 million
permits, roughly equal to their current emissions, according to
Li Qiang, an official at the consultancy.
Then from 2014, "the number of permits issued will drop by
4.13 percent per year", Li told Reuters.
In mid-2015 companies must surrender permits to the
government to cover their 2013 and 2014 emissions.
If the plan is approved, this would make Chongqing the first
of the seven pilots to publish an emissions trajectory that
requires actual emission cuts from this year.
Chongqing had originally intended to launch the market last
year, but it was derailed in the aftermath of the fall of former
municipal party secretary Bo Xilai.
In addition to the local permits, companies will be allowed
to use offsets issued by the central government, known as
Chinese Certified Emissions Reductions (CCERs), to cover 8
percent of their emissions.
All CCERs must be from renewable energy projects based in
Chongqing, however. Hydropower, one of the biggest supply
sources of carbon offset, will be ineligible, the draft said.
(Reporting by Kathy Chen and Stian Reklev; editing by Jane