Why your smartphone and acid rain should give you hope about climate change

Why your smartphone and acid rain should give you hope about climate change

Earlier this Fall, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) put the world on notice (again): Unless we make significant changes in how we get our energy and use our land, we will be committing to a future with tremendous human suffering from extreme weather, drought, and ecological damage. While the report is driving important conversations about solutions to this challenge, the average reader might feel discouraged about the changes required. Luckily, the truth is more hopeful than some recent press lets on.

See the latest from Assistant Professor of Environmental Science and Policy at Smith College, Alex Barron.

Mapping Carbon Pricing Around the World

Mapping Carbon Pricing Around the World

Putting a price on carbon pollution is recognized as an effective, transparent and efficient policy approach to reducing GHG emissions. Indeed, pricing carbon emissions is much more beneficial than paying its developmental, economic, and health costs! The good news is: more and more countries are taking advantage of this economic instrument and the number of carbon pricing initiatives (such as Carbon Tax or Emission Trading Scheme - ETS) has tripled in the last decade

Read Chandni Dinakaran’s blog post on how the World Bank Group is mapping carbon pricing initiatives around the world.

Paris goals can only be achieved in time with robust bottom-up action

The Intergovenmental Panel on Climate Change this month published its special report on what action is required to keep global temperature increases to less than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels. But real demand for change is growing at ground level. Consumers around the world are paying greater attention to the environment and the climate, and making changes to their own lifestyles. Alexis Leroy, the CEO and Founder of Allcot Group, makes the case for bottom-up action.

Dominica: Tax Reform to Boost Climate Resilience

Dominica: Tax Reform to Boost Climate Resilience

Dominica, a small-island state in the Caribbean, is among the countries most exposed to natural hazards. In response, Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit has expressed “plans to make Dominica the first climate resilient nation in the world”. This includes through strengthening the resilience of Dominica’s physical infrastructure and natural environment, but also through building greater fiscal resilience, flexibility and ability to cope with climate events and shocks. Read more in David Cal MacWilliam’s post.

The 2018 economics Nobel shows we can’t discuss economics without considering climate change

The 2018 economics Nobel shows we can’t discuss economics without considering climate change

Nathaniel Keohane, Senior Vice President for Climate Change at the Environmental Defense Fund, emphasizes how, in his words, we can no longer discuss our economic future without considering the enormous costs of climate change. Building off the recent Nobel prize in economics awarded to his former teacher and colleague William Nordhaus, Keohane highlights the costs of climate change, but also the real opportunities a low-carbon economy presents. A case Nordhaus has made for the last quarter century.


Recap: Climate Week Provides Platform to Drive Action in Latin America and the Caribbean

Recap: Climate Week Provides Platform to Drive Action in Latin America and the Caribbean

The 12th edition of the Latin America and Caribbean Climate Week, which took place this year in Montevideo, Uruguay from August 20-23, concluded its program with showcasing groundbreaking action underway in the region to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and build climate resilience to improve sustainability and readiness to tackle the impacts of climate change.

Steps Toward a Low-Carbon Economy: From Footprints to Forward Estimates of Earnings at Risk

Steps Toward a Low-Carbon Economy: From Footprints to Forward Estimates of Earnings at Risk

The landmark Paris Agreement to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy marked a sea change in the global fight against climate change. A swelling tide of carbon-limiting regulations has since emerged, shifting the narrative from what once was a largely ethical debate about the sustainability of our planet for future generations, to a material set of risks and opportunities for the global economy and financial markets, today.

Higher Education Leadership on Carbon Pricing

Higher Education Leadership on Carbon Pricing

Earlier this month, a new kind of player emerged on carbon pricing: colleges and universities.  They are not only implementing carbon prices; they are researching and sharing their work. Casey Pickett provides a recap from the launch of the Toolkit for Internal Carbon Pricing in Higher Education and calls for greater engagement from leaders in higher-education.

Carbon pricing is crucial to save planet

Carbon pricing is crucial to save planet

The impacts of the changing climate are becoming increasingly evident, especially for the most vulnerable people in the world. We must limit the carbon and other greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius, as outlined in the Paris Agreement. There is no Plan B because, as President Emmanuel Macron, the French president, has said, “There is no Planet B.”

Declaration on Carbon Pricing in the Americas: Building Momentum Among Continents

Declaration on Carbon Pricing in the Americas: Building Momentum Among Continents

In the wake of the historic Paris Agreement, new partnerships are emerging around the world to keep the momentum on climate action going — including the Declaration on Carbon Pricing in the Americas. Neydi Cruz, Angela Churie Kallhauge, Dirk Forrister, and Nathaniel Keohane lay out the background to the Declaration and what the partners have achieved since its December 2017 signing.

A Sector at a Crossroads: the Emerging Role of Carbon Pricing in Transportation

A Sector at a Crossroads: the Emerging Role of Carbon Pricing in Transportation

Much of global climate action today is focused on tackling emissions from the energy sector and industrial activities. The importance of decarbonizing transport, a sector that produces around one quarter of energy-related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally, has been rather under-appreciated. In the United States, transportation has overtaken power generation as the number one emitter of carbon emissions. And with ever increasing demand for mobility and the rise of renewables in the power sector, transportation’s slice of the global emissions pie is expected to grow further, unless a concerted global effort to is undertaken to buck the tide.

Resurgence of Carbon Pricing in Asia

Resurgence of Carbon Pricing in Asia

In 2017, we continued to see steady growth of carbon pricing in Asia. Some of the encouraging trends include China’s launching its national emission trading system (ETS) in December 2017, Kazakhstan restarting its ETS in 2018 after a two-year suspension, Korean introducing new design reforms in the ETS, Singapore preparing to implement a carbon tax from 2019 and India declaring its intention to launch a voluntary carbon market in the country.

The Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition: Fostering Climate Leadership in a Bottom-Up World

The Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition: Fostering Climate Leadership in a Bottom-Up World

I was one of the architects behind the CPLC, and have recently moved to a new position to help the International Finance Corporation promote private sector-led development.  Departing put me in reflective mode:  how did this unique, impactful initiative come to exist? And can a bottom-up, public-private initiative, provide lessons to those seeking new models to tackle other global challenges? 

Unilever: Using Carbon Pricing to Achieve Corporate Goals

Unilever:  Using Carbon Pricing to Achieve Corporate Goals

Worldwide, the private sector is increasingly acknowledging the business case for investing in climate business opportunities and climate risk management. However, the question of which management approaches are most appropriate for each company is still being explored.

In a recent webinar on designing and implementing internal carbon pricing hosted by the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (CPLC), the World Economic Forum (WEF) and Yale University, Unilever - one of the largest consumer goods company in the world - discussed some approaches that businesses can take, and have already taken, to implement such measures.

Carbon Pricing to Catalyze Sustainable Shared Prosperity

Carbon Pricing to Catalyze Sustainable Shared Prosperity

Our experience illustrates the transformational innovation of this multilevel, multilateral coalition: non-governmental organizations, governments, UN agencies, businesses, banks, and universities, come together around one table, and work as peers to design and to facilitate the deployment of smart carbon pricing, across the world. Such multilevel collaboration is essential to achieving the optimal timeline to full-spectrum inclusive climate prosperity.