Introduction of greenhouse gases emissions trading

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The Kyoto Protocol intended to thwart global warming was ratified by Russia in November 2004 and will come into force in February 2005.

Greenhouse gas emissions – a new commodity

Parties with commitments under the Kyoto Protocol have accepted targets for limiting or reducing emissions. These targets are expressed as levels of allowed emissions, or “assigned amounts,” over the 2008-2012 commitment period. The allowed emissions are divided into “assigned amount units” (AAUs).

Emissions trading, as set out in Article 17 of the Kyoto Protocol, allows countries that have emission units to spare - emissions permitted them but not "used" - to sell this excess capacity to countries that are over their targets.

Thus, a new commodity was created in the form of emission reductions or removals. Since carbon dioxide is the principal greenhouse gas, people speak simply of trading in carbon. Carbon is now tracked and traded like any other commodity. This is known as the "carbon market."


  • Economic benefit for the government and companies
  • New technology for energy
  • Alternative form of energy
  • Renewal energy
  • Diplomatic policy (Especially of the U.S.A)
  • People's awareness for Greenhouse issue
  • Climate change & global warming
  • Health concerns
  • Depletion of resources
  • Strict legislation
  • Natural Disasters


  • American foreign policy ,
  • Suspicion of greenhouse gases effect,
  • Conflict of diplomatic policy and benefit,
  • Cost of developing and maintaining sustainable processes
  • Low cost manufacturing is the key for developing countries to maintain their high growth rate
  • Increase in consumption / production (not sustainable)
  • Strong lobby for big corporations (Oil&Gas / Chemical / etc.)
  • Lack of social pressure on governments


Old: The prevention of global warming is the cost for business activities.
New: The prevention of global warming is the opportunity for business activities.


Sources for additional information about this driving force. (if you have found people, put the links to them)


  • 1997 The Kyoto Protocol adoption
  • 2004 The Kyoto Protocol ratification
  • 2009 Copenhagen (COP 15): United Nations Climate Change Conference

Web Resources:

[1] - United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

[2] - Kyoto Protocol Status of Ratification