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China slams firms for falsifying carbon data

China slams firms for falsifying carbon data

Cooling towers emit steam and chimneys billow in an industrial zone in Wu'an, Hebei province, China, February 23, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files

(Corrects company name to Zhongtan Nengtou Tech Co, not Zhongchuang Nengtou Co, in paragraph 5, and clarifies in paragraphs 5 and 6 that not all of the government charges applied to each company. Adds comment from SinoCarbon in paragraph 7)

BEIJING :China's environment ministry has slammed firms for falsifying carbon data, part of the country's efforts to improve data quality as it prepares to expand its national emissions trading scheme into more industrial sectors.

The findings published on Monday follow a campaign launched by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) in October-December last year aimed at ascertaining the accuracy of carbon emission verification reports submitted across the country.

"Accurate and reliable data is the lifeline for the effective and standardized operation of the carbon emissions trading market," the MEE said in a statement on Monday.

China, the world's biggest greenhouse gas emitter, put its repeatedly delayed national emission trading scheme (ETS) into operation in July last year. But the transparency and accuracy of emissions data remain a big concern for Beijing as well as the market's participants.

Data verification firm Zhongtan Nengtou Tech Co was charged with "making false coal samples" and "tampering with and forging test reports", the MEE said. A second firm, Liaoning Dongmei Testing and Analysis Research Institute, was also charged with tampering with test reports.

Two other companies, SinoCarbon Innovation & Investment Co and Qingdao Xinuo Renewable Co, were separately charged with "writing distorted and inaccurate conclusions", the MEE said.

In a statement, SinoCarbon said "SinoCarbon has always been adhering to the principle that data quality is the lifeline of the healthy operation of the carbon market. We will resolutely support the MEE to crackdown on data fraud...and support further strengthening of data disclosure," it said

Reuters could not immediately reach the other three companies by telephone.

The MEE also said it will urge local environment bureaus to continue investigating the four firms and will further strengthen the supervision and management of carbon data verification companies.

China's current ETS currently includes about 2,000 enterprises in the power sector, which emit close to 4.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide each year, or 40per cent of the country's total.

The government is considering slashing the carbon emission allowances to power utilities to avoid a market surplus, and it is also expected to widen market coverage to include emitters from sectors such as steelmaking.

(Reporting by Muyu Xu and David Stanway)

Source: Reuters/az

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