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Briefings
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…

Briefings
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,…

Briefings
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…

Letters
3 Nov 2017

Carbon Market Watch recommendations for COP23

Dear Respected Colleague, Carbon Market Watch is pleased to share our SBSTA, SBI, and APA recommendations as well as an overview of our upcoming events and recent publications (below). Phase out Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) To reach the objectives of the Paris Agreement, it is essential to learn from past experience avoid the mistakes made with…

Briefings
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.

Briefings
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).

Briefings
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.

Letters
17 Jun 2015

Letter to Commissioner Arias Cañete in view of European Commission consultation on Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry (LULUCF)

Dear Commissioner Arias Cañete,
The European Commission has consulted stakeholders about the role the EU’s land and forests should play in its 2030 Climate and Energy Framework. With this letter, the undersigned organisations are registering their views and state that Option 1 (LULUCF pillar), is their preferred option since it is the only one that could uphold the environmental and social integrity of the EU’s target. They call on the EU to have a clear position ahead of Paris on the need for two distinct global goals, one for LULUCF and another for other emissions, including non CO2 emissions from agriculture.

At the European Summit in October 2014, Heads of State agreed that, by 2030, the EU will domestically reduce its emissions by at least 40 per cent compared to 1990. In the run up to the United Nations climate summit in Paris, the EU should continue to show leadership to tackle climate change by upholding the environmental integrity of the ‘at least 40 per cent’ target. We believe that unless the following points are addressed, the EU is at risk not only of backsliding on its ambition and harming its credibility in this crucial year for climate, but it could entail damaging impacts on biodiversity and local communities.

Policy Submissions
17 Jun 2015

Carbon Market Watch response to the EU consultation on addressing greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture and LULUCF in the context of the 2030 EU climate and energy framework

1. In your view, which of the multiple objectives of agriculture, forestry and other land use will gain most in relative importance by 2030?

It will be critical to ensure the long-term stability of carbon pools for carbon storage, biodiversity protection and ecosystem preservation in the future. Currently the emissions from land use represent a quarter of all human emissions and it is hence vital that the land use sector also contributes to tackling climate change.
The use of biomass is limited due to finite land availability and therefore the use of biomass should follow the cascading hierarchy and only as a last resort be used for lower-quality applications where other viable alternatives exist, which is the case with power generation.
Finally, it should be recognised that food security and sustainable farming should go hand in hand. Actions that support this include no-till farming, silvopastoral practises and demand-side measures to limit excess consumption.