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SummaryforPolicyMakersSection5.2DraftSubmittedforGovernmentApproval
April7,2014

Internationalcooperationonclimatechangehasdiversifiedoverthepastdecade.TheUnited
NationsFrameworkConventiononClimateChange(UNFCCC)remainsaprimaryinternationalforum
forclimatenegotiations,andisseenbymanyasthemostlegitimateinternationalclimatepolicy
venuedueinparttoitsvirtuallyuniversalmembership[13.3.1,13.4.1.4,13.5].However,other
institutionsorganizedatmanydifferentscaleshaveriseninimportanceduetotheinclusionof
climatechangeissuesinotherpolicyarenasandgrowingawarenessofthecobenefitsthatcanarise
fromlinkingclimatemitigationandotherissues[13.3,13.4,13.5].
Existingandproposedinternationalclimateagreementsandinstrumentsvaryintheirfocusand
degreeofcentralization.Internationalclimateagreementsandinstrumentsspan:multilateral
agreements(suchastheKyotoProtocoltargetsandaccountingrules),harmonizednationalpolicies,
anddecentralizedbutcoordinatednationalpolicies(suchasplannedlinkagesofnationalandsub
nationalemissionstradingschemes).Also,regionalandregionallycoordinatedpoliciesexistand
havebeenproposed.[Figure13.2,13.4,13.13.2,14.4]
TheKyotoProtocolwasthefirstbindingsteptowardimplementingtheprinciplesandgoals
providedbytheUNFCCC,butithashadlimitedeffectsonglobalemissionsbecausesome
countriesdidnotratifytheProtocol,somePartiesdidnotmeettheircommitments,andits
commitmentsappliedtoonlyaportionoftheglobaleconomy(mediumevidence,lowagreement).
ThePartiescollectivelysurpassedtheircollectiveemissionreductiontargetinthefirstcommitment
period,buttheProtocolcreditedemissionsreductionsthatwouldhaveoccurredeveninitsabsence.
TheKyotoProtocoldoesnotdirectlyinfluencetheemissionsofnonAnnexIcountries,whichhave
grownrapidlyoverthepastdecade.[5.2,13.13.1.1]TheKyotoProtocolsCleanDevelopment
Mechanism(CDM),whichcreatedamarketforemissionsoffsetsfromdevelopingcountries,had
generatedcreditsequivalenttoover1.3GtCO
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eqbyJuly2013.Itsenvironmentaleffectivenesshas
beenmixedduetoconcernsabouttheadditionalityofprojects,thevalidityofbaselines,the
possibilityofemissionsleakage,andrecentcreditpricedecreases(mediumevidence;medium
agreement).CDMprojectswereconcentratedinalimitednumberofcountries.[13.7.2,13.13.1.2,
14.3.7.1]
RecentUNFCCCnegotiationshavesoughttoincludemoreambitiouscontributionsfromthe
countrieswithcommitmentsundertheKyotoProtocol,mitigationcontributionsfromabroader
setofcountries,andnewfinanceandtechnologymechanisms.Underthe2010CancnAgreement,
developedcountriesformalizedvoluntarypledgesofquantified,economywideemissionreduction
targetsandsomedevelopingcountriesformalizedvoluntarypledgestomitigationactions.The
distributionalimpactoftheagreementwilldependinpartonthemagnitudeandsourcesof
financing,althoughthescientificliteratureonthispointislimited,becausefinancingmechanisms
areevolvingmorerapidlythanrespectivescientificassessments(lowevidence;lowagreement).
Underthe2011DurbanPlatformforEnhancedAction,delegatesagreedtocraftafuturelegal
regimethatwouldbe'applicabletoallPartiesundertheConvention'andwouldinclude
substantialnewfinancialsupportandtechnologyarrangementstobenefitdevelopingcountries,but
thedelegatesdidnotspecifymeansforachievingthoseends.[13.5.1.1,13.13.1.3,16.2.1.1]
Asacomplementtoorintheabsenceofanewbinding,internationalagreementonclimate
change,policylinkagesamongexistingandfutureregional,national,andsubnationalclimate
policiesofferpotentialclimatemitigationbenefits(mediumevidence,mediumagreement)[13.3.1,
13.5.1.3,13.5.3].Linkagescanbeestablishedbetweencarbonmarketsandthroughregional
cooperation,suchasembodyingmitigationobjectivesintradeagreementsorthejointconstruction
ofinfrastructuresthatfacilitatereductionincarbonemissions[14.5].
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Internationalcooperationmayhavearoleinstimulatinginvestment,financialincentives,and
regulationstopromotetechnologicalinnovationanddiffusion(mediumevidence,medium
agreement).Technologypolicycanhelplowermitigationcosts,therebyalsoincreasingincentivesfor
participationandcompliancewithinternationalcooperativeefforts,particularlyinthelongrun.
[1.4.4,2.6,3.5,4.3,13.3,13.9]
Regionalinitiativesthosebetweenthenationalandglobalscalesfocusedonmitigationare
eitherbeingdevelopedorimplementedinmanyareas.Theirimpactonglobalmitigationhasbeen
limitedtodate.(mediumconfidence)Manyclimatepoliciescouldbemoreenvironmentallyand
economicallyeffectiveifimplementedacrossbroadgeographicalregionsbecauseofthecolocation
ofinfrastructuresandtradeadvantages.Onlyinareasofdeepintegration(e.g.,intheEuropean
Union)havesuchinitiativeshadanidentifiableimpactonmitigationthroughbindingpoliciesthat
includeregulationandmarketbasedmechanisms.Manyregionalinitiativesorientedaroundgoals
otherthanclimatechange,suchascoordinatedinvestmentsinnaturalgasandelectricitygridsas
wellasregionaltradeandinvestmentagreements,arerelevantformitigation.Somenewliterature
suggeststhatregionalpowerpoolsandgasgridshavesupportedthereplacementofhighemissions
fuelswithlowemissionorrenewableenergysources,andthatregionaltradeagreementswith
environmentalagreementhaveonaveragemodestlyreducedemissionsamongparticipants.[14.4,
14.5]
Internationalcooperationregardingmitigationandadaptationpoliciesandmeasurescanbe
understoodinthecontextofbroadersocietalgoals.Severalframingconceptsandprinciplescanbe
broughttobear:maximizingglobalnetbenefits;equity,burdensharing,andrelatedprinciplesof
distributivejustice;precautionandpreventionoffuturerisks;andsustainabledevelopment.These
criteriamayattimesconflict,forcingtradeoffsamongthem.Distributionalequityandfairnessmay
beconsideredimportantattributesofclimatepolicybecauseoftheirimpactonfeasibilityof
internationalcooperation.[2.3,3.10,4.6,13.2]