Introduction to the Special Issue - Theoretical Advances in and Empirical Lessons on Emission Trading Schemes
Emission trading schemes (ETS) are being employed by an increasing number of countries as a market-based policy instrument to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and so address climate change. Although traditional environmental economics has laid a strong foundation for ETS design, the existing schemes of GHG trading in different countries are facing many new challenges and critical issues still need to be explored. China, the largest greenhouse gas emitter, is currently in the process of setting up ETS pilot schemes. Learning from the ETS experiences of other countries may prove valuable. Against this background, an international conference was held in Beijing on the theoretical advances in and empirical lessons of emission trading schemes. Leading scholars from China, Germany, France, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand and the United States presented new research findings. Ten selected papers from this conference are brought together in this Special Issue of Energy and Environment. Topics include analysing greenhouse gas emissions, the abatement potentials in key sectors, the regulation of ETS, sector coverage of ETS, interaction between ETS and other policy instruments, and between ETS and investment in carbon abatement technology. Experiences with several ETS were explored, including SO2 trading in China, carbon emissions trading in California, and several ETS pilot schemes in China.