10 November 2015

FEEM announces release of CEPR-FERDI eBook "Towards a Workable and Effective Climate Regime"

Source: Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei

Towards a Workable and Effective Climate Regime
A CEPR-FERDI eBook, by:
Scott Barrett (Columbia University),
Carlo Carraro (Ca' Foscari University of Venice, CEPR and FEEM), and
Jaime de Melo (University of Geneva and FERDI)

The eBook is available for free download here.

An Re3 column summarising it is available here.
This year, for the first time ever, nearly all of the world's countries are making pledges to help limit future climate change. As of October 1st, 147 countries, representing about 85 percent of global emissions, have submitted pledges to lower emissions relative to current forecasts. But these pledges are not expected to prevent global emissions from increasing through 2030. The global goal of limiting mean global temperature change to 2 degrees Celsius relative to the pre-industrial level requires more drastic action.

Incorporating contributions from 49 authors, this eBook holds the premise that the world needs a climate change regime that is both workable and effective—"workable" in the sense that it can be accepted by sovereign states; and "effective" in the sense that it ultimately stabilizes the global climate. Such a regime must be built on the belief that by cooperating, every country can be made better off. The book suggests a number of ways in which this can be done. The most important reinforcing measures discussed are:

  • Financing of energy, research, development, and dissemination (both public and private) must be scaled up dramatically, so as to lower the cost of alternative energy sources.
  • Carbon pricing must be encouraged.
  • Fast-growing developing countries must be put onto a new and different growth path, one that contributes to their development in the short-to-medium term, but that also limits climate change, and so protects the continued development of these countries, in the long term.
  • The most vulnerable countries must be helped to adapt to climate change.
  • Finally, to overcome free rider incentives, a robust system for measuring, reporting, and verifying emission reductions must be supplemented by additional measures, whether "building blocks" that exploit other opportunities for emission reductions, or measures that can enforce agreed reductions in emissions.

Cooperation must therefore occur in multiple areas simultaneously – for undertaking research, development, and dissemination, for carbon pricing, for financing investment and adaptation, and for enforcing agreements to limit emissions. The scale, breadth, and complexity of the task at hand is unprecedented.

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