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The ETS in China and Europe: dynamics, policy options and global sustainability perspectives

Paul Welfens (), Nan Yu, David Hanrahan and Yong Geng
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Nan Yu: University of Wuppertal (EIIW)
David Hanrahan: University of Wuppertal (EIIW)
Yong Geng: Shanghai Jiao Tong University

International Economics and Economic Policy, 2017, vol. 14, issue 3, No 8, 517-535

Abstract: Abstract The Emission Trading Schemes of China and Europe show that China’s envisaged national ETS could bring a major contribution in the international approach against global warming; new perspectives on the use of composite sustainability indicators are also highlighted. China’s regional pilot schemes will converge to a (more) uniform price of emission allowances. As China is a major economic and political actor in the world economy, China’s progress with ETS is important. At the same time, China’s progress in the field of green international competitiveness – standing for a positive revealed comparative advantage in environmentally friendly goods – in the period 2000–2015 is considerable and the improved positioning of China in the EIIW-vita sustainability indicator shows considerable technological dynamics in Asia. The European ETS is working, but it suffers from the rather low price of emission allowances. The long-term time horizon of 2050 in the EU climate policy is rather ambitious and it is unclear whether or not a consistent G20 approach can be achieved – with the EU, China, Japan and the US cooperating amongst each other. There is a lack of a specialized climate stabilization institution in the world economy, the traditional anchoring of climate policy in the UN weakens the practical pressure for efficient cooperation since the UN is very heterogeneous in terms of per capita income and GHG emissions per unit of GDP; G20 might be an institution that is suitable for effective policy cooperation. More initiatives in the field of recycling could be useful.

Keywords: Emission trading systems; Carbon trading; Europe; China; EU; Greenhouse gases; F18; Q50; Q54; Q58 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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DOI: 10.1007/s10368-017-0392-4

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