The California Air Resources Board April 19 amended its cap-and-trade program to link California\u2019s carbon market to a nearly identical market in the Canadian province of Québec. \t\u201cCalifornia retains absolute control over its own program, and the larger carbon market overall provides additional options for California businesses,\u201d stated Nichols. \tUnder the linkage: * Each jurisdiction will accept the other\u2019s carbon allowances and approved offsets for compliance purposes; * The two will share a system for tracking allowances and approved offsets; * Both will share an online auction platform and market monitoring services and information; * The non-profit Western Climate Initiative is set to cover basic administrative functions for both; and * Both will maintain control over their respective programs. For California, according to the Air Board, the linkage will: * Expand the greenhouse gas emissions reduction effort; * Create a larger pool of available allowances and approved offsets for companies; * Create more opportunities for investments in the carbon market; and * Establish a template for possible future linkage with other programs. \tThe Air Board plans to work with Québec on the detailed steps needed for the first linked cap-and-trade auction, though no date has been set.