New Publication: Developing a sectoral new market mechanism: insights from theoretical analysis and country showcases

by myself, Hans Bolscher, Jeroen van der Laan, Jelmer Hoogzaad & Jos Sijm

Update: The article can be downloaded for free for a limited time here.

Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) have decided to establish a ‘new market- based mechanism’ (NMM) to promote mitigation across ‘broad segments’ of developing countries’ economies but have so far defined only some broad outlines of how it is to function. This article in Climate Policy identifies key design options of the NMM based on a survey of the literature and reviews them against a range of assessment criteria. Furthermore, potential application of the NMM is analysed for five country-sector combinations. The analysis finds that lack of data and of institutions that could manage the NMM are key bottlenecks. In addition, the analysis reveals the existence of substantial no-regret reduction potential, suggesting that sectors may not be sensitive to the market incentives from an NMM. Governmental capacity building and Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) might be more appropriate in the short term, preparing the ground for the adoption of market-based approaches at a later stage. NMM pilots could be based on supported NAMAs but should ideally generate tradable and compliance-grade emission credits in order to fully simulate the real-life conditions of an NMM.

Life Intrudes

Due to new commitments and life events I’m unfortunately no longer able to keep up my weekly news roundup. I aim to instead blog more about my own work. Thanks a tonne for all the positive feedback I have received.

Climate News of the Week Roundup: New UN Climate Report Updates Warnings of Dangerous Climate Impacts

This week’s roundup covers the publication of the second part of the new assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, new global installation figures and forecasts for solar PV, publication of last year’s verified emissions in the EU emission trading system, and Germany’s latest energy policy decisions. Read the full post »

New Publication: Does the Climate Regime Need New Types of Mitigation Commitments?

New article in Carbon and Climate Law Review (subscription required)

Apart from the much-debated question of what legal form the 2015 climate agreement is supposed to have, another core issue is the substantive content of countries’ commitments. While the climate regime has so far mostly been based on emission targets, literature has identified a broad range of other possible types of mitigation commitments, such as technology targets, emission price commitments, or commitments to specific policies and measures (PAMs). The nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) submitted by developing countries under the Cancún Agreements also show a broad range of different forms of participation. This article surveys the possible commitment types that have so far been discussed in literature and in the UNFCCC negotiations and assesses their respective advantages and disadvantages against a set of criteria: environmental effectiveness, cost effectiveness, distributional aspects and institutional feasibility. The article finds that no commitment option provides a silver bullet. All options have several advantages but also disadvantages. The environmentally most effective way forward may lie in pursuing a multi-dimensional approach, combining emission targets with other commitment types to compensate for the drawbacks of the emission-based approach. However, such an approach would also increase complexity, both in terms of the negotiations and in terms of implementation and administration.

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Air Pollution Causes Millions of Deaths Each Year, World Health Organisation Says

This week’s roundup features the publication of new estimates of the impacts of air pollution by the World Health Organisation, a discussion of China’s renewable energy prospects, new figures on renewable energy deployment and costs in the US, UK, Italy and Germany, the German government being able to give a single example of a company leaving the country due to energy prices, and more.

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Climate News of the Week Roundup: Dramatic Economic Change Is Inevitable

This week’s roundup covers a NASA funded study saying that civilisational collapse is a pretty regular historic phenomenon and one that may get repeated this century, a viewpoing arguing that a positive economic transformation is far more likely, the IEA lowballing the potential of renewables and new figures on solar energy developments.

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Life intrudes

Probably no blogging for the next three weeks or so.

Climate News of the Week Roundup: Germany Projected to Miss Emission Targets Due to New Government’s Energy Policy

This week’s roundup covers a sobering analysis of what impacts the new German government’s energy policy can be expected to have, an analysis of whether the major economies will meet their 2020 pledges, the US tabling its vision for the 2015 climate agreement, an analysis of the Boxer-Sanders climate bill, a proposal for breaking the deadlock on a 2030 EU renewables target, Denmark’s cross-party consensus to be a climate frontrunner, India switching water pumps from diesel to solar, a vision of the Western Balkans as new Desertec, the results of the first year of free public transport in Talinn, and another major sign of the collapse of the Clean Development Mechanism.

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Climate News of the Week Roundup: There’s No Warming Standstill, World Metereological Organisation says

This week’s roundup covers the WMO (once again) debunking the notion that there has been a pause in global warming, a report showing that fossil fuel subsidies are as high as they ever were, an open letter by Japanese scientists arguing that nuclear power is not the answer to climate change, continuing discussions on post-2020 European climate and energy policy, a study saying that Europe is losing its climate policy frontrunner status, 2013 renewables installation figures from around the world bearing out this view, discussions about Germany’s future renewables policy, and more.

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Climate News of the Week Roundup: Clean Investment Potentially Turning the Corner But Has a Long Way to Go

This week’s roundup features a projection that clean energy investment may be on the upswing again, a report saying that it’s still only 1/3 of what’s needed, a study saying that wind can in fact be a boon for grid reliability, an interview with John Schellnhuber, a study saying energy efficiency could save European consumers hundreds of billions of euros, the World Bank’s president backing fossil fuel divestment, Obama’s state of the union address, China’s growth of coal consumption slowing down, Chris Huhne attacking Cameron over fracking in the UK, and more.

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