Most of the 635 enterprises that participate in the city’s carbon-trade pilot program met their emission goals this past year and the city’s total turnover of carbon trade exceeded 100 million yuan (US$16 million) as of July 1, the highest in the nation, according to the city’s development and reform commission.
Carbon trading refers to a system to control emissions of carbon dioxide whereby governments set an overall limit on the amount of carbon that can be emitted.
More enterprises will participate in the carbon-trade program in the following year and the city is planning to include public transportation in the program, commission officials said.
The 635 enterprises include power plants and companies in the manufacturing sector. Their total carbon emissions in 2013 decreased by 3.83 million tons, or 11.7 percent, compared with 2010. Eight power plants alone reduced emissions by 3.06 million tons.
Nineteen large enterprises including ZTE, Huawei and BYD performed outstandingly in cutting carbon emission, officials said. Their total emissions dropped by 6.8 percent (310,000 tons), but their industrial added values increased by 57 percent (82.3 billion yuan).
The largest buyer of carbon credits is a multinational company called Vitaestic, which paid 3.5 million yuan to offset 48,000 tons of extra emissions. Meanwhile, other enterprises such as Foxconn and Skyworth earned millions of yuan by selling their remaining credits.
Participating enterprises will get allowances of carbon emissions based on their previous emissions and added economic values. Enterprises that emit less than their allowances can trade the remainder in the carbon-trading market. If an enterprise’s emissions exceed its allowance, it must buy credits in the market.
The city is now drawing up detailed provisions to punish big emitters who fail to meet their emission goals, officials said.