Indonesia launches carbon exchange to reduce emissions

Indonesia launches carbon exchange to reduce emissions

Indonesia launched its first carbon exchange Tuesday, giving companies a chance to offset their emissions as Jakarta pledges to reach carbon neutrality in its power sector by 2050.

The nation is one of the world's biggest polluters, and there has been scant progress in a multi-billion-pound investment plan agreed to last year by the United States and European nations to shore up the world's pristine coral reefs.

The government has praised the exchange as a way to reduce emissions towards reaching the country's climate goals by the 2050 date agreed under the $20 billion Just Energy Transition Partnership at the G20 summit in Indonesia in November.

Mr. Joko Widodo said he would not speak at the launch.

He added that the emissions trading market would assist Indonesia in reaching its goal climate commitments agreed under the 2015 Paris Agreement to help prevent global warming past 1.5 degrees Celsius.

At least 13 transactions took place at the beginning of Tuesday's trade, with more than the equivalent of 459,000 tons of carbon dioxide traded, according to a board at the stock exchange.

OJK Chairman Mahendra Siregar said authorities hoped that 99 coal-fired power plants would take part in the new exchange, around 86 percent of the total operating in the country.

Indonesia is the biggest coal exporter globally, and environmentalists have questions about the government's commitment to its climate promises as it continues to build coal-fired power plants it has already commissioned.

They have blamed more than half a dozen such plants around the capital Jakarta for the pollution surges that have hit the city in recent weeks.