Just after the Paris Agreement enters into force, the world will reconvene in Marrakesh to put the interpretive meat on the bones of the Paris Agreement, including on the role of carbon markets, notably Cooperative Approaches and the Sustainable Development Mechanism (SDM) in Article 6.
In elaborating the rules of Article 6, Carbon Market Watch makes the following key recommendations:
Both Cooperative Approaches and the SDM must promote ambition by leading to emission reductions beyond the current ambition levels of NDCs. Notably, they must:
- Deliver an overall mitigation in global emissions by applying a discount on emission reductions from the SDM and on transfers via Cooperative Approaches.
- Ensure that mitigation outcomes are actual demonstrated emission reductions, not hot air.
- Promote mitigation activities that further economy and sectoral wide transformation or paradigm shift for truly long term mitigation benefits.
Ensure environmental integrity
Trading hot air does nothing to fight climate change, nor does wasting scarce climate finance on business as usual mitigation activities, actions that are non-permanent, or lead to more emissions elsewhere. To ensure environmental integrity, markets must:
- Create a robust overall accounting framework to prevent double counting between NDC compliance, cooperative approaches, the SDM, and targets outside the scope of NDCs such as international civil aviation.
- Ensure that carbon credits are real, permanent, additional and verified and contribute to sustainable development.
- Exclude activity types that are likely to happen anyway, as well as temporary sinks such as forestry with a negative list.
Promote sustainable development and protect human rights
The preamble of the Paris Agreement sets out that climate action must respect human rights and the goal of sustainable development is repeated again and again including in Article 6. To back words up with real action and in accordance with the universal Sustainable Development Goals, markets must:
- Require SDM activities to monitor and report co-benefits towards the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
- Use proceeds from trading under Cooperative Approaches to finance adaptation and sustainable development.
- Protect the rights of affected peoples and communities to full and effective participation with stakeholder consultations.
- Safeguards and an institutional grievance process must also further guarantee against human rights violations.
For more detailed information, please see our recommendations on:
- Land use, land use change and forestry (SBSTA, agenda item 11a)
- International Civil Aviation (as they relate to APA, agenda items 3, 5 and 6)
- Review of the CDM Modalities and Procedures (SBI, agenda item 7a)
- CDM appeals procedure (SBI, agenda item 7b)
For an overview of all our activities at COP22, please see here.
We also look forward to welcoming you to our side event on “Carbon Markets in the Paris Agreement: Civil Society Priorities for the Future”, which will take place on 8. November, 15.00-16.30 in room Pacific (150). For more information on the event, please see here.
Carbon Market Watch is also happy to invite you to our civil society side event on Human Rights and Climate Change: What’s next after Paris?, to take place on 15. November,15:00-16:30 in Green Zone Room 2. For more information on the event, please see here.