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Carbon Market Watch recommendations for the Bonn Climate Change Conference (SB48)

Dear Respected Colleague,

Ahead of the Bonn Climate Change Conference, Carbon Market Watch is pleased to share our recommendations as well as an overview of our upcoming event and recent publications (below).

A new direction for the Sustainable Development Mechanism
A zero-sum offsetting system is incompatible with the Paris spirit, there is hence no future for the CDM post-2020. The Sustainable Development Mechanism (SDM) should, therefore, be established as a results based climate finance scheme rather than as an offsetting system.

Further, the SDM rules should ensure that emission reductions achieved are real, verifiable, and additional. The SDM also needs a new and improved approach to make sure that emission reduction projects don’t harm local communities, but instead bring co-benefits and promote sustainable development.

Don’t let aviation undermine the Paris Agreement
The Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) is clearly not a long term solution for aviation emissions in a world where all sectors must quickly reduce their own emissions.

Seen that it will create a lot of demand for carbon credits in the future, a key issue is to ensure that emissions reductions are not counted towards both national commitments under the Paris Agreement and the targets set under the future aviation offsetting scheme. This will require a detailed and transparent monitoring process between CORSIA and the UN market mechanisms when it comes to the accounting of emission reductions. Otherwise, CORSIA could end up increasing the overall emissions by an equivalent of those from 817 coal fired power plants in a year.

For the Bonn Climate Change Conference, Carbon Market Watch makes the following recommendations:

Key recommendations for SBSTA48 agenda item 12:

  • Move away from zero-sum offsetting by establishing the SDM as a tool for results based climate finance
  • Ensure environmental integrity by establishing robust criteria for SDM projects
  • Render CDM and JI projects and their associated units ineligible under the SDM
  • Establish accountability by ensuring the constitution and conduct of all SDM governance bodies is impartial and transparent
  • Protect social safeguards by establishing a grievance mechanism
  • Allow for stakeholders to inform and scrutinize development of rules and project implementation through adequate public participation channels
  • Develop an environmental and social policy for the SDM including means for monitoring and validation


Key Recommendations for APA agenda items 3 and 5:

  • Address States’ contributions outside of the NDCs and update the Synthesis Report to account for the actual effect of CORSIA
  • Avoid double counting through a common accounting system for all international transfers
  • Set a time limit to include inside the NDC any activity that is used for crediting outside of the NDCs, in order to avoid perverse incentives against ambition under the NDC
  • Provide annual reports on offsets surrendered to ICAO and how double counting was avoided


Related publications

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