Carbon Pricing Around the World

Carbon Pricing Around the World

Laser Talk

Question:  Which other countries have started pricing carbon?

Answer:  As of May 2021, there were 64 carbon pricing policies in operation and three scheduled for implementation. [1,2] These included both carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes (ETS), and covered about 22 percent of worldwide emissions.

The list of countries that already practice some method of national carbon pricing includes Argentina, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, the European Union (27 countries), Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, the UK, and Ukraine. Other countries that are considering joining them include Brazil, Brunei, Indonesia, Pakistan, Russia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey, and Vietnam.

The country with the biggest carbon footprint, China, started with eight regional GHG emissions trading projects in 2013, and in July 2021 launched a nationwide expansion within their electricity sector, with other sectors to be integrated over time. [3]

And our neighbor Canada, where some provinces have already had carbon taxes starting with British Columbia in 2008, has now launched its federal ‘backstop’ carbon tax and dividend program for provinces that haven’t enacted carbon pricing capable of reducing emissions 30 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. [4]

Of all the world’s developed economies, [5] only the U.S. and Australia do not have some form of nationwide carbon pricing in place. Alternatively, if you look at the 20 biggest economies, the only other holdouts are India and a few Persian Gulf oil states. [6]

Click here for supporting graphics.

In a Nutshell: Many countries, including most of our large trading partners, have instituted some form of national carbon pricing. Of all the world’s developed economies, only Australia and the U.S. have no nationwide carbon pricing in place.

  1. “State and Trends of Carbon Pricing 2021.” Publ. World Bank Group, Washington, DC. (May 2021).
  2. Chao-Fong, L. “Russian parliament approves law to curb greenhouse gas emissions.” The Independent (02 Jun 2021).
  3. “Trading Begins under China’s National ETS.” IISD/SDG Knowledge Hub (19 Jul 2021).
  4. “Technical paper: federal carbon pricing backstop.” Government of Canada (5 Jan 2018).
  5. “World Economic Situation and Prospects 2021: Annex.” United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (25 Jan 2021).
  6. “List of Countries by GDP (Nominal).” Wikipedia (26 Jun 2021).

This page was last updated on 10/26/21 at 11:35 CDT.