EU carbon market prices expected to rise next year

For the first time since 2011, traders in the European Union's carbon emissions market expect the continent's carbon prices to rise next year, according to a survey of market participants.

Survey respondents expect an average price of 10.79 euros ($11.76) per metric ton of carbon during the current phase of the Emissions Trading System, Reuters reported Tuesday. The current price of carbon in the EU is around 7.30 euros.

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It's the first time in four years that survey participates — which included utilities, banks and traders within the emissions market — anticipated an increase in the carbon price. Respondents also said they expect an average carbon price of 18.40 euros per metric ton between 2020 and 2030. 

The EU's carbon market is the world's first, and its largest, covering emissions from more than 11,000 power stations in 31 countries.

In the U.S., California is the only state with a cap-and-trade carbon market. But most survey respondents said they expect more markets like the EU's if a United Nations climate conference later this year yields a deal to cut carbon emissions.

China is in the process of formalizing its carbon market, hoping to launch one next year, the Associated Press reported Tuesday.