In this study, we consider the sulfur dioxide emissions trading pilot scheme (SETPS) of China, with pilot provinces as the treatment group and other provinces as the control group. We employ the difference-in-differences method to estimate the effects of the SETPS on pollution mitigation and economic growth. Results show that the SETPS plays a robust role both in China's industrial sulfur dioxide abatement and in economic growth. Furthermore, by applying regression analysis to explore regional heterogeneity, we find that it has a stronger effect on industrial sulfur dioxide reduction in the Central China than it does in the Eastern and Western China, and it also exerts a positive influence on economic growth in the Western China. Moreover, a time-trend analysis indicates that the pollution reduction effect of the SETPS has decreased, while the economic growth effect has slightly increased since 2007.