Facilitating Linkage of Heterogeneous Regional, National, and Sub-National Climate Policies Through a Future International Agreement

Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, November 2014

62 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2015

See all articles by Daniel Bodansky

Daniel Bodansky

Arizona State University Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

Seth Hoedl

Harvard University

Gilbert E. Metcalf

Tufts University - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Robert N. Stavins

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS); Resources for the Future; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: November 1, 2014

Abstract

Negotiations pursuant to the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action appear likely to lead to a 2015 Paris agreement that embodies a hybrid climate policy architecture, combining top-down elements, such as for monitoring, reporting, and verification, with bottom-up elements, including “nationally determined contributions” from each participating country, detailing what it intends to do to reduce emissions, based on its national circumstances. For such a system to be cost-effective — and thus more likely to achieve significant global emissions reductions — a key feature will be linkages among regional, national, and sub-national climate policies. By linkage, we mean a formal recognition by a greenhouse gas mitigation program in one jurisdiction (a regional, national, or sub-national government) of emission reductions undertaken in another jurisdiction for purposes of complying with the first jurisdiction’s mitigation program. We examine how a future international policy architecture could help facilitate the growth and operation of a robust system of international linkages of regional, national, and sub-national policies. Several design elements merit serious consideration for inclusion in the Paris agreement, either directly or by establishing a process for subsequent international elaboration. At the same time, including detailed linkage rules in the core agreement is not desirable because this could make it difficult for rules to evolve in light of experience.

Keywords: climate change, linkage, policy instruments

JEL Classification: Q4, Q48

Suggested Citation

Bodansky, Daniel and Hoedl, Seth and Metcalf, Gilbert E. and Stavins, Robert N., Facilitating Linkage of Heterogeneous Regional, National, and Sub-National Climate Policies Through a Future International Agreement (November 1, 2014). Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, November 2014. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2554732

Daniel Bodansky

Arizona State University Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

111 E Taylor St
Phoenix, AZ 85004
United States

Seth Hoedl

Harvard University ( email )

1875 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Gilbert E. Metcalf

Tufts University - Department of Economics ( email )

Medford, MA 02155
United States
617-627-3685 (Phone)
617-627-3917 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Robert N. Stavins (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-1820 (Phone)
617-496-3783 (Fax)

Resources for the Future

1616 P Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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