Ten questions: carbon peak and carbon neutralization

On April 22, 2016, leaders of more than 170 countries signed the Paris agreement at the United Nations headquarters in New York, setting off a wave of global green and low-carbon transformation. At the beginning of the “fourteenth five year plan”, the “carbon peak” and “carbon neutralization”, as the important goals of China’s “fourteenth five year plan” pollution prevention and control, have been written into the five-year plan of economic and social development for the first time.

In the past eight years, as one of the national pilot carbon emission trading markets, Beijing has accumulated a lot of experience in both system design and market form. Recently, a reporter from Beijing business daily interviewed the relevant person in charge of Beijing Ecological Environment Bureau to interpret the Beijing model of green transformation of energy conservation and emission reduction.


What is “carbon peaking” and “carbon neutralization”?

Carbon peaking means that carbon dioxide emissions reach the highest value in history, and then enter the process of continuous decline after the platform period, which is also the historical turning point of carbon dioxide emissions from increasing to decreasing; carbon neutralization means that carbon dioxide emissions from human activities are reduced to the minimum through energy efficiency improvement and energy substitution, and then offset by forest carbon sink or capture and other means Carbon emissions, to achieve a balance between the source and sink.

What are the efforts of enterprises and individuals to achieve carbon reduction?

For enterprises, we encourage them to participate in some of our market-oriented mechanisms and means. For example, we set up a carbon emissions trading market. In the market, enterprises reduce carbon dioxide emissions by improving their energy efficiency and technological transformation. At the same time, some enterprises whose emissions exceed the limit can meet their performance standards and obligations by purchasing or other means from the market; and our understanding of individual ways to reduce carbon emissions is mainly from everyone’s lifestyle, including clothing, food, housing, transportation and so on.

What qualifications do enterprises need to have to apply for carbon emission trading? Can individuals apply?

For Beijing market, the main trading entities of carbon market are the key emission units under management, and a small number of qualified institutions and individuals.

What is carbon emissions trading? Can it be understood that carbon dioxide can sell money?

Carbon emission trading is mainly through market-oriented means, so that enterprises can fully fulfill their carbon emission obligations. As one of the first seven pilot cities to realize carbon emission trading in China, Beijing has been exploring the carbon emission trading market since 2013. Up to now, the pilot carbon market has been running for seven complete annual cycles. The overall operation of the market is stable, and the trading volume and price of carbon emission quota have risen steadily, which has become an important means to reduce the total amount and intensity of carbon emission reduction.

In fact, in a popular sense, it can also be said that reducing carbon dioxide emissions can sell money. We also want to tell you through the market that enterprises can obtain economic benefits from the market through their own technological transformation and improvement of energy efficiency.

Which industries in the city have applied for carbon emission trading?

The pilot carbon market covers eight industries, including power, heat, cement, petrochemical, industry, service and transportation. In 2020, 843 key enterprises will enter the carbon market, including enterprises and public institutions, but the specific list and quantity are still dynamically adjusted.

It should be said that there are about 800-900 key emission units participating in our carbon market. In addition, the emission quota should be appropriately tightened, and the gap between the annual emission quota issued by the carbon market and the total emission should be kept at about 5%.

The industry believes that carbon emission trading pricing directly affects the effect of carbon reduction in the later stage. How to price carbon emission trading market?

Beijing carbon market follows the market mechanism and adopts market pricing. Since the launch of Beijing carbon market, the market operation mechanism has been gradually improved, the trading is more active, and the carbon quota price is also rising steadily. Among the seven pilot carbon markets in China, the carbon price is the highest. In 2020, the annual quota turnover of the pilot carbon market will be 4.7 million tons, with the trading volume of 245 million yuan. The average price of carbon quota will exceed 50 yuan / ton, the average price of online transaction will be 89 yuan / ton, and the highest price will exceed 100 yuan / ton. The cumulative trading volume of carbon quota exceeded 40.83 million tons, and the turnover exceeded 1.72 billion yuan. A total of 68 million tons of carbon trading products were sold, with a turnover of 1.94 billion yuan.

At present, in order to reduce carbon, what attempts have enterprises in Beijing made?

At present, Tsinghua University has set up a green university office, which is responsible for tapping the potential of energy conservation and carbon reduction on campus, and introducing the use of green energy such as solar hot water in a number of campus projects such as outdoor swimming pool, so as to reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions of the school operation; McDonald’s, KFC and other catering enterprises have opened up the mechanism of turning off lights in different periods and regions, so as to reduce the energy consumption in business activities and reduce carbon emissions Annual carbon emissions.

At the same time, the market mechanism will reward green and low-carbon “leaders”. For example, the State Grid Beijing electric power company has arranged special personnel to focus on the line loss work of the whole city’s power grid, reducing the energy consumption of power grid operation. In seven years, the line loss rate of power grid dropped from 6.77% to 4.32%, and the annual carbon emission reduction is close to 1 million tons.

As a national pilot carbon emission trading market, what institutional innovations have been carried out in energy conservation and emission reduction in Beijing?

In fact, in 2013, the Beijing Municipal People’s Congress took the lead in issuing the decision on the pilot work of carbon emission trading in Beijing under the premise of strictly controlling the total amount of carbon emissions. In 2014, the municipal government issued the measures for the administration of carbon emission trading in Beijing, and the competent departments successively formulated and issued the guidelines for carbon dioxide emission accounting and reporting of enterprises (units) and other 20 local governments Standards and trading rules to build a system of laws, policies and systems to support the operation of the pilot carbon market.

In addition to system design, from the perspective of market industry, the carbon market in Beijing involves a lot of industries. From the perspective of energy conservation and emission reduction, there are many major scientific research institutions and R & D centers in Beijing, which provide technical support for enterprise transformation through the combination of industry, University and research.

In addition to quota carbon trading, are there any other carbon trading projects for enterprises to choose from?

In addition to carbon quota trading, other offsetting products have been set up in the carbon market. Among them, voluntary emission reduction trading projects, such as forestry carbon sequestration and green travel carbon inclusive projects, are reviewed and released according to regulations. As offset products, they provide more diversified product options for the carbon market, and also bring economic returns to the participants in voluntary emission reduction.

Not long ago, Beijing issued the “implementation plan of Beijing on building a modern environmental governance system” and proposed to build a national greenhouse gas voluntary emission reduction trading center. When we talk about voluntary emission reduction, we should mention CCER (national certified voluntary emission reduction), which is a very useful supplement to carbon market trading. At present, Beijing is actively striving for the settlement of the national greenhouse gas voluntary emission reduction trading center.

The national unified carbon market is coming. As a local pilot, what else should be done?

The first is to link up with the national carbon market; the second is to continue to optimize the construction of the local carbon market; the third is to undertake the national greenhouse gas voluntary emission reduction trading center.

Beijing Business Daily reporter Tao Feng Liu Hanlin

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