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12 Apr 2021

A New Hope – Recommendations for the EU Emissions Trading System review

Update 12/04/2021: Adjustments to the infographics “EU carbon emissions” and “The effect of a one-off EU ETS cap reduction” Executive summary With total greenhouse gas emissions of around 700 million tonnes per year, resource and energy-intensive industry is the third-largest climate polluter in Europe. The cement, chemical and steel sectors alone are responsible for almost…

Policy Submissions
30 Mar 2021

Carbon Market Watch’s response to the public consultation on the revision of the Industrial Emissions Directive

Carbon Market Watch fully supports the comprehensive feedback provided by the European Environmental Bureau to the revision and welcomes the opportunity to give specific views on how the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) should be revised to support industrial decarbonisation in a complementary manner to the EU Emission Trading System.   While we support the general direction…

24 Nov 2020

Carbon markets and agriculture – why offsetting is putting us on the wrong track

A joint briefing by Carbon Market Watch, Secours Catholique, CCFD – Terre Solidaire and Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy (IATP) Executive summary Climate mitigation projects in the agriculture sector, particularly those focused on storing carbon in soils, are increasingly being tied to carbon markets. But the impact of these initiatives is highly questionable. First,…

29 Oct 2020

10 Key Principles for a Carbon Border Adjustment Measure (CBAM)

With more information on the design options that the European Commission is considering for a Carbon Border Adjustment Measure (CBAM) and slightly more clarity on the different options available, Carbon Market Watch has updated its position and refined the key principles originally presented in the briefing “Carbon Border Adjustments: Climate Protection or Climate Protectionism?” published…

7 Jul 2020

Cleaning up industry: why the EU’s strategy isn’t enough yet

Summary The new EU Industrial Strategy, released by the European Commission on 10 March 2020 as part of a larger industrial package, is the first sector-specific plan to be published since the European Green Deal was announced. It is an opportunity to put the EU economy on track towards climate neutrality, and put climate action…

Policy Submissions
10 Apr 2020

Carbon Market Watch’s feedback on the inception impact assessment on the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism

Carbon Market Watch fully supports efforts to price GHG emissions, within and outside the EU.  The EU ETS has been successful for certain sectors, but has failed to incentivise large scale decarbonisation of European industry, in part because of its excessive measures to guard against the hypothetical risk of carbon leakage. Industrial companies have gained…

31 Mar 2020

Carbon Border Adjustments: Climate Protection or Climate Protectionism?

Pricing greenhouse gas emissions is one of the most important tools to decarbonise economies, and it has been implemented in the EU since 2005 through the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS). As part of this policy, the heavy industry benefits from large exemptions and receives nearly all of its allowances (i.e. pollution permits) for free….

22 Dec 2015

Paris outcomes: Carbon Market Watch Analysis of COP 21

From 30 November to 12 December 2015, Parties to the UNFCCC met in Paris to negotiate a new global climate treaty.

The Paris Agreement was a remarkable outcome, especially after the failures of Copenhagen. Almost all involved, including Carbon Market Watch, seemed surprised at how positive the outcome was. However, expectations had been carefully managed in the preceding years, so that aspirations of environmentalists to have a treaty that reflected the scientific reality by dividing up the remaining global carbon budget, had been downplayed into unreality.

30 Nov 2015

Report: Using nature to pardon environmental pollution – Risks of agriculture sequestration carbon offsets

Agriculture supports the livelihoods of around a half of the world’s population, but is at the same time a notable source of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) driving climate change. As of one the options to tackle emissions in the sector, governments have been discussing to include additional agricultural activities into the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) under the United Nations Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) since 2011. Whether agricultural activities should be eligible for carbon offsetting programmes is not only topical within discussions in the UNFCCC but also within certain regional cap-and-trade schemes and discussions to establish a market based mechanism for international aviation emissions, expected to be adopted in October 2016 under the auspices of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

30 Nov 2015

Policy Brief: Fossil and biological carbon: a tonne is not a tonne

Whether biological carbon credit should be traded in carbon markets is topical, with discussions ongoing in the UNFCCC, ICAO and the California Cap-and-Trade system. To date, compliance markets have rejected the eligibility of biological carbon offsets. They are right to do so. Fossil and biological carbon operate on different parts of the carbon cycle, and on very different timescales. Fossil carbon is permanent; biological carbon is potentially and frequently subject to rapid fluxes, whether natural or manmade. For these reasons, offset credits from REDD+, afforestation and reforestation or other biological systems should not be treated as fungible with fossil carbon, but should instead be addressed through other, appropriate, policy measures.