Big business

Published: Thursday 15 May 2003

The eu market for carbon emissions trading could be worth 1.8 billion euros (about us $1.93 billion) annually by 2012, says a recent business report. The estimate is based on carbon dioxide prices increasing from five euros (about us $5.38) a tonne in 2005, when the eu plans to launch greenhouse gas trading, to more than 20 euros (about us $21.5) a tonne in 2012. The report suggests that the emissions market could average 90 million tonnes a year.

Under the eu plan, the carbon dioxide released by factories will be regulated and they will have to trade emissions rights with other companies in the European bloc. It is expected that the corporate sector will benefit financially from this process, by saving on the costs required to install in-house pollution reduction processes.

The eu considers emissions trading to be an important step in achieving its Kyoto Protocol target. Under the Kyoto plan, the European bloc hopes to reduce greenhouse gas levels to eight per cent below 1990 quantities by 2012.

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