International emissions trading under Article 6 will be in the spotlight at the December 2019 UN climate talks in Madrid, Spain (COP 25). Negotiations over carbon markets forced last year’s climate talks in Katowice, Poland into overtime and ultimately left the section of the Paris Agreement rulebook on Article 6 unresolved. In Madrid, countries will try to finalize this last remaining piece of the rulebook. Below we provide resources that highlight the need for effective rules on transparency and robust accounting.
With effective rules on transparency and robust accounting, international emissions trading can mobilize significant private sector investment and help the world meet the ambitious climate and development goals established in the Paris Agreement. These rules should form the bedrock of the international accord’s carbon market provisions under Article 6. The content of these rules needs to be determined by countries as part of the continuing process of negotiating the Paris Agreement “rulebook.”
The details of accounting and transparency may sometimes sound boring and technical. But these details constitute the essential nuts and bolts of the Paris Agreement, and are critical to avoiding real risks of “double counting” of emissions reductions. The content of these rules is as important as countries’ headline climate targets, since the headline numbers are only as good as our ability to ensure countries are clearly reducing emissions and counting those reductions consistently.
Businesses know this. During COP 24 in Katowice, more than 50 companies, business groups and non-governmental organizations, representing an employment footprint of more than a billion people from 130 countries signed the Declaration on Sound Carbon Accounting.
The resources below are intended to contribute to ongoing international efforts to conclude effective guidance to countries on counting and reporting international transfers of emissions reductions (also known as internationally transferred mitigation outcomes, or “ITMOs,” under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement).
Article 6 primer
- Issue brief: Why Article 6 of the Paris Agreement Matters [PDF]
Carbon markets and ambition
- Issue brief: The power of markets to increase ambition [PDF]
- Issue brief: Carbon prices under carbon market scenarios consistent with the Paris Agreement: Implications for the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) [PDF]
- Position paper: EDF submission to the UN Talanoa Dialogue process, on the potential of carbon markets to raise climate ambition
- Position paper: Joint NGO Inputs on Guidance for Article 6 of the Paris Agreement on Cooperative Approaches [PDF]
- Blog: International emissions trading could increase ambition
Double counting/corresponding adjustments
- Issue brief: Global Emissions Within and Outside the Scope of Nationally Determined Contributions: A Preliminary Analysis of “Double Counting” Risks for Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes [PDF]
- Handbook: How to Avoid Double Counting Of Emissions Reductions under the Paris Agreement: Handbook [PDF], Grid [PDF]
- Blog: “Double counting” a bigger risk than previously thought
- Blog: Climate negotiators can protect the Paris Agreement by avoiding double counting
Clean Development Mechanism
- Position paper: Brazil’s Amazon Hydroelectrics in the United Nations Clean Development Mechanism (CDM): Defrauding Investors, Cheating the Atmosphere? [PDF]
- Position paper: The Future of the Clean Development Mechanism under a New Regime of Higher Climate Ambition [PDF]
- Position paper: What is the Legal Basis for the Use of Certified Emission Reductions after 2020? [PDF]
- Blog: Will greed and corruption derail international climate talks?
- Blog: Can CDM reduce emissions? Yes, for small countries
- Blog: Clouds on the horizon: The legal status of the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism