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GreenX, ICE Launch Calif. Carbon Futures

Exchange firms GreenX and IntercontinentalExchanges have today launched futures contracts tied to the California carbon market.

ICE announced that the first trade of the California Carbon Allowance forward contract took place this morning. The transaction was for 100 contracts between NRG Power Marketing LLC and Shell Energy North America (US) L.P. at a price of $17.00 per allowance.

ICE says that this was the first ever exchange-cleared trade based on California’s forthcoming cap and trade program.

GreenX moved the opening trading day for its California Carbon Allowance Futures to today from a planned date of September 11, citing “strong customer demand and increasing over-the-counter activity.”

The launches come in the wake of a decision by state regulator the California Air Resources Board to reaffirm its commitment to the planned cap-and-trade system.

Earlier this year a San Francisco Superior Court judge said the CARB had yet to adequately analyze alternatives to a cap-and-trade program, and ordered it to stop work on the program and investigate alternatives such as a carbon tax. This analysis has now been completed, the Los Angeles Times reports, and the CARB is pressing on with its cap-and-trade plans.

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