The World Bank yesterday launched the first global emissions trading fund, which is meant to combat climate change by promoting the transfer of environmentally friendly technology to developing countries. Modeled after a sulfur-dioxide emissions trading program in the U.S., the new World Bank program offers companies in industrial nations credits against future carbon-dioxide emissions limits if they invest in projects that lower greenhouse-gas emissions in developing nations, where it is cheaper to reduce such emissions. The $150 million program will be funded by corporations and industrial nations. The governments of Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden have already agreed to participate, as have six Japanese electric power companies, two Japanese trading companies, and an electric utility in Belgium.

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