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Japan to purchase carbon credit from Hungary to meet Kyoto target

Japan is negotiating with Hungary to purchase carbon credits so that it can meet the Kyoto Protocol target of greenhouse gas emissions, media reports said Monday.

The two nations would discuss details and sign a memorandum this week. It will be the first time that Japan has bought carbon credits from another country. Without the credit purchase, Japan would fail to fulfill the Kyoto Protocol requirements of cutting its emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases by 6% from its 1990 levels by 2012.

The energy efficiency of Japan's industry is good in comparison to other countries, but that of its other sectors and of households is poor. Japan has sought a leading role in drafting the successor to the Kyoto Protocol, but it is well off course to meeting its own obligations as its economy enjoys a record expansion from recession in the 1990s. The Kyoto Protocol allows a company or a country that reduces its carbon-dioxide emissions below the target level to sell the extra reduction as credit to others.

„We are negotiating with several developed countries in the Middle and Eastern Europe, including Hungary, Poland and Czech Republic,” said Yasuo Takahashi, an official at the environment ministry. „Our negotiations with Hungary are in the final stage, and we want to strike a deal with Hungary by the end of this year,” he said.

The second-largest economy in the world saw its emissions actually rise 7.8% in 2005 from 1990 levels. The government had earlier urged various industries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions another 30%, as well as asking households, offices and the transport sector to join the drive. (earthtimes, Press release)