CEEP: Climate agreement an opportunity to review Europe’s emission trading system

CEEP: Climate agreement an opportunity to review Europe’s emission trading system

The COP 21 climate conference in Paris was concluded by the adoption of an international agreement. The aim of the document, signed by close to 200 countries, is to reduce the increase in the global temperature, by below two degrees Celsius over the pre-industrial level. According to experts from Central Europe Energy Partners (CEEP), the concept of an emissions trading system (ETS), adopted by the European Union, has not been backed by other countries. This indicates how important it is for the EU to review the entire system. The fact that the adopted agreement has a global reach is undoubtedly an important achievement in the ongoing combat against climate change. It is also a major commitment. According to Marcin Bodio, the CEO of CEEP, the results of the Paris summit will need to be evaluated at the global, not regional level. „We need time to adopt the provisions of the agreement, and subsequently, launch the process of their implementation. The next climate conference, scheduled for 2023, will be a good opportunity to review the progress made. This date seems quite distant, but, when you take into consideration the perspective of average investment processes in the energy sector and energy-intensive industries, there is not that much time left,” Mr. Bodio observed. Another major achievement of the Paris summit is how it helped to raise awareness of climate change at the global level. „In the course of the entire conference, we witnessed vigorous discussions which spurred various schemes and plans to reduce the increase of global temperatures. The most ambitious position was taken by the European Union, which, not only advocated [...]
COP-21: will it deliver a breakthrough in the global action against climate change?

COP-21: will it deliver a breakthrough in the global action against climate change?

We certainly hope so. Climate change is real and warrants action. It is a global challenge, requiring effective measures to be undertaken by all significant world economies under an effective and clear international agreement. This is where COP-21 is supposed to make the difference, representing a turning point, whereby the EU – so far an almost lone runner – is joined by the global community with ambitious, binding commitments to reduce GHG emissions in an equitable manner. The EU has already submitted its target: a binding 40% cut in GHG emissions in 2030, with respect to 1990 levels. It is an unconditional commitment: whatever the results in Paris, it will not be revised downwards, but possibly upwards. In this way, the European Union has set an ambitious model for other regions of the world to follow. In fact, strong, equitable and binding commitments from all regions in the world are indispensable for two main reasons: To effectively address climate change: the EU is responsible for only 10% of today’s global GHG emissions, with a further declining trend. However, no matter what level of ambition its emission reductions achieve, its practical contribution to the resolution of the climate change emergency will be almost irrelevant, unless the other major world economies ‘play the same tune’. To restore a level playing field among competing economies: ambitious decarbonisation targets do not come free of cost: the EU economy – so, ultimately its citizens – will be footing the bill. The EU’s industry, and particularly the energy-intensive sectors, such as petroleum refining, chemicals, steel, cement, aluminium, and many others, are posed to further worsen [...]
COP-21: A summary of the pledges made so far

COP-21: A summary of the pledges made so far

As 2014 was the hottest year on record, and 2015 is likely to surpass that, whilst 2013 broke all records for carbon pollution, there is a fair degree of urgency behind achieving a ground-breaking deal at the Paris Summit in December. Some countries have already ‘declared their hands’ by making pledges in advance of the talks. These give us a hint on the real state-of-play, ahead of COP-21. Up until now, nearly 50 countries have filed their emissions reduction pledges to the UN, covering approximately 60% of the world’s emissions. They include the EU (28 countries, not one), the US, China, Canada, Russia, Australia, and Mexico. Key countries such as India and Brazil, have yet to make official their plans. The national contribution each country is prepared to make, is known at the UN as an Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC). [Tweet "An important factor to look out for is the baseline year upon which such INDCs are made"]An important factor to look out for is the baseline year upon which such INDCs are made. Under the Kyoto Protocol, nearly all countries have previously tended to use the base year of 1990, which make pledges easier to compare. However, the US, China, and Canada have chosen 2005 as their baseline year, with the result that their promised cuts appear higher than they are in reality. Canada’s target, for instance, of 30% below 2005 levels, is equivalent to only 2% below 1990 levels. The US’s recently up-dated pledge of 32% carbon cuts on 2005 levels, still leaves it far behind the EU’s “at least 40% target”, by comparison.   China, [...]

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