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California’s carbon traders have the jitters

Nine months before California is set to finalize a trading system aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions, participants have the jitters.

From the L.A. Times:

Nine months before California is set to finalize a trading system aimed at curbing greenhouse gas emissions, participants have the jitters.

Litigation threatens to delay the start of the multibillion-dollar program, and industry executives worry that its regulations will fall short of guaranteeing a smoothly operating market. Fear is growing that it could be susceptible to the fraud that has plagued a similar European system.

“It feels as though the sun has risen in the West,” Henry Derwent, head of the Geneva-based International Emissions Trading Assn., told traders, bankers, entrepreneurs and oil and utility executives in Los Angeles last week.

“But however tempting it may be … to celebrate getting out ahead of the rest of the United States,” he cautioned, California’s trading system must show “real momentum.... If the program goes poorly, if the regulations don’t allow for a functioning market, there may be little market for California to lead,” Derwent said.

For more, see: California's carbon market: Will cap-and-trade work?

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