A comparative analysis of Chinese regional climate regulation policy: ETS as an example

  • Jingjing JiangEmail author
  • Bin Ye
Original Paper


An effective and powerful regulation is indispensable for the development and smooth operation of a cap-and-trade emission trading scheme (ETS). Seven regional pilot ETSs have been established and gradually improved in China, from which the experiences and lessons learned may provide useful references to facilitate China’s national ETS regulation. This article systematically reviews and compares the practices and policies of carbon trading regulation in China’s seven pilot schemes from three major aspects of regulatory institutions and subjects, regulatory objects and content, and regulatory means and techniques, and covering both internal and external regulatory architectures. The comparative analysis has demonstrated that the regional pilot schemes have made notable achievements in developing ETS regulatory systems with Chinese characteristics, but they still have considerable deficiencies. Referencing both international and domestic pilot experiences, this study recommends that China’s national ETS improve regulatory institutional basis, foster an extensive participation of pluralistic regulatory subjects with a clear division of powers and responsibilities, establish effective regulatory systems on carbon finance, and continuously enrich regulatory techniques and platforms.


Climate regulation Carbon trading Comparative analysis Regional pilots China 



This study is very grateful for the support of the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (Grant No. 2017A030313442) and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant Nos. 71603110 and 71803074). Additional support was provided by the Discipline Development Project of the Harbin Institute of Technology (Shenzhen) on Combating Climate Change and Low-Carbon Economics, and by the Southern University of Science and Technology (Grant No. G01296001).


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Economics and ManagementHarbin Institute of Technology (Shenzhen)ShenzhenChina
  2. 2.School of Environmental Science and EngineeringSouthern University of Science and TechnologyShenzhenChina

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