State and Trends of the Carbon Market Report Shows Growth Despite Uncertainty

30 May 2012: The annual report on State and Trends of the Carbon Market 2012 presents an optimistic view of the carbon market, which despite adverse conditions, still grew by 11% in 2011, amounting to US$176 billion with US$10.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) traded during 2011.

The report was launched by the World Bank during the Carbon Expo 2012, taking place from 30 May - 1 June 2012, in Cologne, Germany. It shows that despite the financial crisis and the related oversupply of carbon credits within the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) as a result of economic downturn, as well as plummeting carbon prices and uncertainty about the post 2020 framework, financially motivated transactions continued to grow within the carbon market.

However, it underscores that prices fell during 2011. With the end of the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol in 2012, the value of the pre-2013 primary certified emissions reduction (CER), emission reduction unit (ERU) and Assigned Amount Unit (AAU) markets continued to decline in 2011. In contrast, post-2012 primary Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) credits increased by 63%, to US$2 billion. The report indicates that China remains the largest source of contracted CERs, and African countries expand their previous negligible participation for the post-2012 period.

The report also highlights new regulatory developments in the creation of national carbon markets continue to drive market perceptions for growth in the use of carbon markets as instruments for mitigation, for example those adopted during 2011 in Australia, California, US, Quebec, Canada, Mexico and South Korea. [Publication Webpage] [Publication: State and Trends of the Carbon Market 2012 Executive Summary]