Fwd: + Japan Fudges Carbon Trading Start as Industry Opposes (Update1)

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Japan Fudges Carbon Trading Start as Industry Opposes (Update1)
2010-12-28 07:32:03.691 GMT

(Updates with Tokyo plans in sixth paragraph.)

By Chisaki Watanabe
Dec. 28 (Bloomberg) -- Japan's government took a step back
from plans to start carbon trading in 2013 amid opposition from
industries that say emission-trading rules would add to costs
and limit their ability to compete against rivals in China and
India who don't face the same restrictions.
Environment Minister Ryu Matsumoto declined to commit to
the 2013 date in a press conference today after a meeting with
other ministers to discuss the nation's emissions trading plans.
In August, an environment ministry panel recommended starting
emission trading in fiscal 2013.
"We will continue to study carbon trading taking into
account various opinions," Matsumoto said at the press
conference. When questioned on when Japan's carbon trading
market would start, he wouldn't give a date.
The ministers agreed that while a carbon trading scheme is
a "pillar" of anti-global warming efforts, there are concerns
it will deter investments in growing industries, said Masato
Okawa, an official at the National Policy Unit of the Cabinet
Secretariat who attended the meeting.
A September survey by Keidanren, Japan's largest business
lobby group, found that 61 of the 64 companies that responded
said they oppose carbon trading, citing competition from
countries like India and China that are not bound by similar
pollution limits.

Lagging Tokyo

Any delay would leave the national government further
behind the capital in introducing carbon trading. Tokyo's
government started a cap-and-trade program in April as part of
Governor Shintaro Ishihara's plan to cut greenhouse gas
emissions by 25 percent this decade. The Tokyo market had its
first emissions trade in August.
Japan's government also said last month it won't help
extend the Kyoto Protocol accord to curb greenhouse-gas
emissions after its targets expire in 2012, calling the treaty
"outdated" because it only regulates 27 percent of global
emissions and doesn't include the U.S. and China.
The stance drew criticism from the G77 group of developing
countries at United Nations climate talks in Cancun, Mexico,
earlier this month.
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said yesterday
it will provide 110 billion yen ($1.3 billion) in subsidies to
153 low-carbon projects nationwide. Companies receiving the
money plan a total 530 billion yen in capital investment to
produce energy efficient cars and electronic products, while
creating jobs.

For Related News and Information:
Most-read alternative energy stories: MNI ALTNRG <GO>
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Renewable energy, environment page: GREEN <GO>
Top Environment stories: TOP ENV <GO>
Top Japan stories: TOP JN <GO>

With assistance by Stuart Biggs in Tokyo. Editors: Peter Langan,
Aaron Sheldrick

To contact the reporters on this story:
Chisaki Watanabe in Tokyo at +81-3-3201-2541 or

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Reed Landberg at +44-20-7330-78624 or