Emissions trading

Published: Sunday 31 May 1992

THE Chicago Board of Trade, one of the biggest markets for grain, meat, money, bullion and Fortune 500 scrips among others, is shortly to start listing an unusual commodity -the environment. In a significant step to turn over cleaning up of the environ- ment to financial markets, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission approved a CBT futures market in pollution rights. The system will be based on "credits" issued bv the US Environment Protection Agency. These may be traded at the CBT and will be issued on the criteria of emissions by individual manufacturing units; the amount credited to the units will vary on the pollutant involved.

Manufacturers can save the credit taken for the future when permissible levels of emissions are expected to be even stiffer.

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