The hottest summer ever to sweep the Northern Hemisphere this year is making efforts to curb global warming greenhouse gas emissions more urgent than ever.
As the world’s biggest emitter of greenhouse gases (GHGs), China plans to build the world’s largest national carbon trading market, intended to reduce overall emissions of gases such as carbon dioxide. As world leaders gather later this month at the United Nations in New York for a climate summit, China’s efforts will be a focal point.
And yet, China has far to go in establishing an effective market-based system for curbing carbon emissions. Although the nation started a pilot program for trading carbon credits in 2011 and has since set up seven regional pilot markets, there’s little evidence of real GHG reductions. The carbon trading trials have suffered from a lack of transparency, toothless caps on emissions, small trading volume and significantly lower carbon prices than in other world markets, experts say.