1 October 2012 — Australia and California will work together towards the development of regional and global carbon markets, exchange comparative experiences on climate policy, and explore options for linking carbon markets.

In New York for the Major Economics Forum on Climate and Energy, Climate Change and Energy Efficiency parliamentary secretary Mark Dreyfus met with members of the Office of Governor Edmund Brown Jr., the California Environmental Protection Agency and the Californian Air Resources Board.

The arrangement will provide a forum for sharing experience on climate policy, including comparative experiences in emissions trading in Australia and California.

Mr Dreyfus said California had long been at the forefront of US efforts to reduce carbon pollution.

“California’s cap and trade program starts on 1 January 2013, and the first auction of carbon allowances occurs in November,” he said.

“By 2015, the program will be the world’s third largest emissions trading market, after the EU and Korean ETS, covering 85 per cent of California’s emissions.

“California’s cap and trade program has some similar design features to Australia’s, covering around 350 businesses.

“It also includes the ability to establish domestic programs to generate carbon offsets across a range of different areas, we can learn from each other’s experiences and share methodologies.”

Other areas of mutual interest include methods of analysis, measurement and inventory, approaches to mandatory reporting and verification, and methods of market monitoring.