China plans to relaunch its voluntary carbon credits trading mechanism, the China Certified Emission Reduction (CCER) program, this year and has largely completed the basic infrastructure required for the move, according to a press release by the State Council of the People’s Republic of China.
“We will accelerate the development of institutions and infrastructure as we strive to launch the CCER trading market as soon as possible within this year and maintain market integrity, fairness and transparency,” Liu Youbin, spokesman for the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, said at a press conference on Thursday, as quoted by China Daily.
The CCER program offers an opportunity for companies to voluntarily earn carbon credits if they reduce their carbon emissions, for example by promoting renewable energy generation and afforestation.
The mechanism was originally launched in 2015 by the National Development and Reform Commission but was suspended a couple of years later.
In 2018, following an institutional reshuffle of the State Council, the management of the CCER program, along with other responsibilities for tackling climate change and reducing emissions, were transferred to the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, which will now be relaunching the marketplace.
A regulation for trial implementation of CCER trading has been drafted by the ministry in collaboration with other relevant government bodies, Liu said, adding that all the documents will soon be made public to solicit opinions.
According to the spokesman, the ministry is currently evaluating suggestions from the public on methodologies for different types of CCER projects.
Construction of the national CCER registration and trading systems has been completed and they are essentially ready to start online operation, Lui said, underlining, however, that this is a “complex systemic project”.
The relaunch of the market is expected to encourage a wider range of companies and industries to contribute to the national emissions reduction efforts, which would help China achieve its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2060, after reaching a peak in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 2030, according to the statement by the ministry.