Can Governments Ban Materials with Large Carbon Footprint? Legal and Administrative Assessment of Product Carbon Requirements

30 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2019

See all articles by Timo Gerres

Timo Gerres

Comillas Pontifical University

Manuel Haussner

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg, Law School, Students

Karsten Neuhoff

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)

Alice Pirlot

University of Oxford - Said Business School; Catholic University of Louvain (UCL)

Date Written: November 2019

Abstract

This paper explores whether governments can ban carbon-intensive materials through product carbon requirements. By setting near-zero emission limits for the production of materials to be sold within a jurisdiction, governments would accelerate the phase out of carbon-intensive production processes. Their announcement could alert basic materials producers, financing institutions, and other relevant stakeholders, thus incentivising them to prepare for this shift by dedicating their innovation efforts and investments to climate friendly production processes and low-carbon materials. The paper analyses various product standards and technical regulations in the European context. The analysis of these standards and technical regulations offers an overview of the types of environmental requirements that the European Union has already adopted. Therefore, it provides a case study of the political, legal, and technical backgrounds for the development of product carbon requirements, both in the EU and beyond. Second, the paper presents an analysis of the provisions in WTO law that would apply to product carbon requirements, underlining the legal arguments in support of their adoption under international trade law.

Keywords: Embodied Carbon, Climate Policy, Standards, Technical Regulations, WTO

JEL Classification: K23, L61, Q54

Suggested Citation

Gerres, Timo and Haussner, Manuel and Neuhoff, Karsten and Pirlot, Alice, Can Governments Ban Materials with Large Carbon Footprint? Legal and Administrative Assessment of Product Carbon Requirements (November 2019). DIW Berlin Discussion Paper No. 1834 (2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3501408 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3501408

Timo Gerres

Comillas Pontifical University ( email )

Alberto Aguilera 21
Madrid, Madrid 28015
Spain

Manuel Haussner

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg-Friedrich Alexander Universität Erlangen Nürnberg, Law School, Students ( email )

Germany

Karsten Neuhoff (Contact Author)

German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin) ( email )

Mohrenstraße 58
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Alice Pirlot

University of Oxford - Said Business School ( email )

Park End Street
Oxford, OX1 1HP
Great Britain

Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) ( email )

Place Montesquieu, 3
Louvain-la-Neuve, 1348
Belgium

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
13
Abstract Views
75
PlumX Metrics