Global schemes to price CO2 emissions worth almost $50 bln: World Bank

The value of global schemes to put a price on carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and designed to reduce greenhouse gases blamed for global warming totalled almost $50 billion as of April 1, the World Bank said in a report on Tuesday.

The Carbon Pricing Watch report estimates emission trading schemes were worth $34 billion on April 1, up from $32 billion in 2014, while carbon taxes around the world, valued for the first time in the report, were about $14 billion.

The increase stemmed largely from the launch in January of South Korea’s emissions trading scheme, which will impose caps on emissions from 525 of the country’s biggest companies and become the world’s second-biggest carbon market. 

The Europe Union’s Emissions Trading System, which caps the emissions of more than 11,000 power plants, factories and airlines, is the world’s largest carbon trading scheme and covers around 45 per cent of the bloc’s emissions.

The value of global trading schemes is based on the number of carbon permits issued by each scheme multiplied by the price of the permits on April 1, the World Bank said.

Some 40 nations and over 20 cities, states and regions now have a price on CO2 emissions, the report said, covering around 12 per cent of annual global greenhouse gas emissions, or the equivalent of nearly 7 billion tonnes of CO2.

The Carbon Pricing Watch report, compiled by the World Bank and climate consultancy Ecofys, is a preview of the World Bank’s State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2015 report, which will be launched later this year, the World Bank said.

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