Blog: Climate ChangeS

Climate ChangeS:  A selection of the most recent and most interesting working papers on the economics of climate change.

http://www.economicsclimatechange.com/

From the description:

Climate ChangeS provides researchers with a timely and accurate update of new research papers on the Economics of Climate Change. On a weekly basis, links to the most recent and interesting working papers are aggregated from a variety of sources for easy and convenient reference. The focus is on research at the frontier, with most contributions appearing just a few days after having been released. For this reason, journal articles are not tracked.

 

 

Hartwell Paper: A New Direction for Climate Change

The London School of Economics and Political Science recently released:  Hartwell Paper: A New Direction for Climate Change.

http://www.lse.ac.uk/collections/mackinderProgramme/theHartwellPaper/

From the Executive Summary:

Climate policy, as it has been understood and practised by many governments of the world under the Kyoto Protocol approach, has failed to produce any discernable real world reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases in fifteen years. The underlying reason for this is that the UNFCCC/Kyoto model was structurally flawed and doomed to fail because it systematically misunderstood the nature of climate change as a policy issue between 1985 and 2009. However, the currently dominant approach has acquired immense political momentum because of the quantities of political capital sunk into it. But in any case the UNFCCC/Kyoto model of climate policy cannot continue because it crashed in late 2009. The Hartwell Paper sets and reviews this context; but doing so is not its sole or primary purpose.

The crash of 2009 presents an immense opportunity to set climate policy free to fly at last. The principal motivation and purpose of this Paper is to explain and to advance this opportunity. To do so involves understanding and accepting a startling proposition. It is now plain that it is not possible to have a ‘climate policy’ that has emissions reductions as the all encompassing goal. However, there are many other reasons why the decarbonisation of the global economy is highly desirable. Therefore, the Paper advocates a radical reframing – an inverting – of approach: accepting that decarbonisation will only be achieved successfully as a benefit contingent upon other goals which are politically attractive and relentlessly pragmatic.

The Paper therefore proposes that the organising principle of our effort should be the raising up of human dignity via three overarching objectives: ensuring energy access for all; ensuring that we develop in a manner that does not undermine the essential functioning of the Earth system; ensuring that our societies are adequately equipped to withstand the risks and dangers that come from all the vagaries of climate, whatever their cause may be.

It explains radical and practical ways to reduce non-CO2 human forcing of climate. It argues that improved climate risk management is a valid policy goal, and is not simply congruent with carbon policy. It explains the political prerequisite of energy efficiency strategies as a first step and documents how this can achieve real emissions reductions. But, above all, it emphasises the primacy of accelerating decarbonisation of energy supply. This calls for very substantially increased investment in innovation in non-carbon energy sources in order to diversify energy supply technologies. The ultimate goal of doing this is to develop non-carbon energy supplies at unsubsidised costs less than those using fossil fuels. The Hartwell Paper advocates funding this work by low hypothecated (dedicated) carbon taxes. It opens discussion on how to channel such money productively.

To reframe the climate issue around matters of human dignity is not just noble or necessary. It is also likely to be more effective than the approach of framing around human sinfulness –which has failed and will continue to fail.

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Greenhouse Gas Emissions Program

Japan Times published an article on Tokyo’s new greenhouse gas emissions regime:

Tokyo’s CO2 cap-and-trade may set national standard.

by Maya Kaneko

Japan Times, Thursday , April 8th.

http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20100408f2.html

Financial Times also has an article on Tokyo’s new program.

Excerpts from the Japan Times article:

Under the leadership of Gov. Shintaro Ishihara, Tokyo aims to slash its carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gas emissions by 25 percent compared with 2000 levels by 2020. The program caps energy-related carbon dioxide emissions from some 1,330 offices and factories in the capital and allows for trading of emissions credits.

About 1,330 offices, commercial buildings and factories that annually consume the crude oil equivalent of more than 1,500 kiloliters of energy will be required to cut total carbon dioxide emissions over the fiscal 2010-2014 period by 6 percent to 8 percent from base-year levels.

Base-year levels are calculated from average emissions over a past period of three consecutive years between fiscal 2002 and 2007. Office buildings face an 8 percent target and factories are subject to a 6 percent goal.

In the fiscal 2015-2019 second phase, they will be required to slash emissions by 17 percent from their base-year levels.

To meet the targets, offices and factories can either make efforts on their own, such as updating to energy-saving equipment, or purchase emissions credits from other entities that have reduced their carbon dioxide output by more than the obligated levels in a system known as cap and trade.

They can also buy credits earned through reduction efforts by small and medium-size companies in Tokyo and the entities’ large-scale branch offices outside the capital. Renewable energy certificates issued by power generators can be also purchased.

Global Warming Policy Foundation

Global Warming Policy Foundation is a UK based climate change site (more Bjorn Lomborg than Al Gore)

From the Web Site’s Information Page

The Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) is an all-party and non-party think tank and a registered educational charity

Our main purpose is to bring reason, integrity and balance to a debate that has become seriously unbalanced, irrationally alarmist, and all too often depressingly intolerant.

The GWPF’s primary purpose is to help restore balance and trust in the climate debate that is frequently distorted by prejudice and exaggeration 

Our main focus is to analyse global warming policies and its economic and other implications. Our aim is to provide the most robust and reliable economic analysis and advice.

We intend to develop alternative policy options and to foster a proper debate (which at present scarcely exists) on the likely cost and consequences of current policies.

We are funded entirely by voluntary donations from a number of private individuals and charitable trusts. In order to make clear its complete independence, it does not accept gifts from either energy companies or anyone with a significant interest in an energy company.

Global Warming Policy Foundation http://www.thegwpf.org/

Ecosystem Marketplace

The Ecosystem Marketplace is a Web site devoted to information on environmental and climate change markets. The “library” link includes the following resources: latest laws, reports, whitepapers, articles, presentations, case studies, and books. The site also has a blog (EcoEko).

Ecosystem Marketplace

http://ecosystemmarketplace.com/index.php

From the Web site description:

The Ecosystem Marketplace seeks to become the world’s leading source of information on markets and payment schemes for ecosystem services; services such as water quality, carbon sequestration and biodiversity. We believe that by providing solid and trust-worthy information on prices, regulation, science, and other market-relevant issues, markets for ecosystem services will one day become a fundamental part of our economic and environmental system, helping give value to environmental services that have, for too long, been taken for granted.

International Climate Policy and Carbon Markets Newsletter

The Euro-Mediterranean Centre for Climate Change issues a free newsletter to help keep up on climate change law developments: “International Climate Policy and Carbon Markets.”

Newsletter description:

International Climate Policy and Carbon Market is a bi-monthly report aimed to show and analyze clearly the evolution frame of the carbon market, and the international and domestic climate policy measures around the world.

 

The report is drafted in four sections focused on i) international negotiations and national policies, ii) European and international energy policy, iii) flexible mechanisms and developing countries, and finally, iv) the valuation of the carbon price in the European and global market

International Climate Policy and Carbon Markets Newsletter

http://www.cmcc.it/publications-meetings/publications/bi-monthly-report-international-climate-policy-and-crbon-market