US$600 Billion-Plus World Carbon Trade Market Projected By 2013

carbon trades computer interface image

Carbon trades interface. Image credit:Nick Gogerty

SBI has made a US$679 billion annual carbon market projection for its market intelligence report, being offered to prospective carbon traders. The number is worth discussing, even if only as an order of magnitude esitmate, to frame our understanding of the global, and hopefully well-managed, carbon trading regime that is to come. For the SBI announcement of report availability see Carbon Emissions Trading Markets Worldwide. (As the full report costs almost US$4,000 we won't be reporting on the details.)

Carbon emissions have been traded, albeit at minor levels, in the over-the-counter (OTC) market since the 1990s. In recent years, significant global governmental involvement in the stabilization of the concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases has facilitated tremendous growth in the market for carbon emissions trading. The value of the carbon market has grown from $727 million in 2004 to $118 billion in 2008.

In addition to the foundational regulatory organizations that have established the framework of the market, and the pre-requisite buyers and sellers, the magnitude and evolving complexity of the global carbon markets has attracted numerous intermediaries, such as brokers, exchanges, aggregators, and financiers, as well as other peripheral participants such as validation and verification, information and analysis, legal, and consulting service providers. Opportunities for market participants are expected to continue to increase as the value of global carbon markets are forecast to grow by 68% per year to $669 billion in 2013.

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