Critical Issues in Environmental Taxation series
Edited by Natalie P. Stoianoff, Larry Kreiser, Bill Butcher, Janet E. Milne and Hope Ashiabor
Chapter 13: Paris: The dilemmas of international climate change negotiations and the role of linked Emissions Trading Schemes in the post-2020 regime
In 1994, a near-universal assembly of countries under the auspices of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) recognised that the increasing concentration of greenhouse gases (GHG) in the atmosphere from anthropogenic sources is causing climate change and its adverse effects are a common concern for humankind. Parties agreed for the first time in 2009 that the increase in global temperature should be below 2°C above pre-industrial temperature. Paradoxically, the same nations have failed for over a decade to achieve an effective, legally binding agreement to reduce global GHG emissions. A new paradigm of international cooperation is now being shaped, based on universal—but not uniform—participation, reflecting national circumstances. Complementing the multilateral platform, there is a proliferation of regional approaches to climate change mitigation and adaptation. It is therefore the right moment to reflect on the decade-long impasse of international negotiations under the auspices of the UNFCCC, in order to understand the challenges and opportunities that have materialised in this process.
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