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International Emissions Trading Schemes

A number of other countries already have an ETS, or are planning one.

New Zealand

NZ has already introduced a mandatory cap and trade and trade scheme that will cover all sectors and all greenhouse gases by 2015. From 1 July 2010 until 31 December 2012 the price of New Zealand Emissions Units (NZUs) will be capped at NZ$25. During this transition period, only one unit will need to be surrendered for every two tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions, effectively reducing the cost of emissions to NZ$12.50 per tonne.

European Union

The EU ETS is a cap and trade scheme. It is the world’s first and largest mandatory trading scheme for CO2 emissions. Phase I commenced in 2005 covering CO2 emissions from major installations in selected sectors, including energy, ferrous metals, mineral industry and pulp and paper. Norway also participates in the EU's emissions trading scheme.

Proposed addition of emissions from all domestic and international flights between EU airports from 2011, and emissions from all international flights that arrive at or depart from an EU airport from 2012. Proposed inclusion of aluminium and certain ferrous metal refineries, chemical industrial processes (both carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide reporting in some cases) and the gases nitrous oxide and per fluorocarbons from 2013.

United Kingdom

The UK participates in the EU ETS by covered UK firms. In addition, the UK is proposing to implement the Carbon Reduction Commitment scheme for CO2 emissions from large non-energy intensive business and public sector entities that are not covered by the EU ETS. The scheme is a mandatory auction based cap and trade scheme (following an initial three year period with non-capped fixed price sale of allowances) covering CO2 emissions from direct and indirect (electricity) consumption. Applies to entities above a threshold for electricity consumption. Emissions covered by UK Climate Change Agreements are excluded.

United States

US Federal - The 2010 United States federal budget proposes to support clean energy development with a 10-year investment of US $15 billion per year, generated from the sale of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions credits. Under the proposed cap-and-trade programme, all GHG emissions credits would be auctioned off, generating an estimated $78.7 billion in additional revenue in FY 2012, steadily increasing to $83 billion by FY 2019.

Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative - Cap and trade for CO2 emissions from fossil fuel electricity generators above a size threshold of 25MW in seven Northeastern states. Credits from offsets from other sectors and gases may used to comply with obligations. First phase proposed from 2009-2015, second phase proposed from 2016-2020.

Western Climate Initiative - Collaboration between 7 Western US States and 4 Canadian Provinces. Proposed cap and trade scheme commencing in 2012 (reporting from 2010) including the six greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto Protocol. Proposed coverage includes electricity generation, commercial and industrial combustion, and industrial process emissions (above 25,000 ton threshold) from 2012. Residential, commercial and industrial fuel combustion (below the 25,000 ton threshold) included from the start of second compliance period in 2015. Other sectors may be included via ‘offset’ projects. The scheme contributes to regional goal of a reduction to 15% below 2005 emissions by 2020.

Japan and Switzerland

Have voluntary cap and trade emissions trading schemes.