Counting carbon in global trade – Why imported emissions challenge the climate regime and what might be done about it (ODI)

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This set of essays identifies two main threats to the climate regime. The first is the growing importance of emissions traded across national borders, currently accounting for up to 38% of global emissions, with developed countries being net importers and emerging economies mostly net exporters. The second is the increasing focus on action to reduce the carbon intensity of trade, including, of course, exports from developing to developed countries. The measurement, reporting and certification of carbon emissions plays a key role.

The essays address five questions:

  • How and why is the geography of carbon emissions changing?
  • How are carbon emissions measured and how are the boundaries set?
  • What are the opportunities and challenges of carbon reporting and certification?
  • What are the implications for developing countries?
  • How should the climate regime adjust to ensure efficient and equitable outcomes?

To read the whole essay series, refer to the ODI website.