Industrial N2O Projects Under the CDM: Adipic Acid – A Case of Carbon Leakage?
This paper evaluates projects under the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) that abate N2O emissions from adipic acid production. The analysis shows that carbon markets enabled N2O emissions abatement levels that had not previously been achieved. However, it also indicates that the CDM appears to have caused significant carbon leakage during the economic downturn in 2008 and 2009. We estimate that about 20% of the CERs issued for CDM adipic acid plants for 2008 and 2009 – totaling to about 13.5 MtCO2e – do not represent real emission reductions.