Brussels — The European Commission wants to help broker an accord on global carbon market mechanisms to achieve the emission reductions needed to meet Paris climate agreement commitments, EU climate action and energy commissioner Miguel Arias Canete said Tuesday.
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"I intend to host a major international carbon markets conference in Brussels in the spring to come to an understanding of the rules, challenges and prospects of international carbon trading," he said at an event in Brussels.
This understanding must respect the "environmental integrity of the system," he added.
The aim is to prepare for a formal agreement on these issues at the next UN global climate summit, COP25, in Chile.
"There are many countries interested in carbon markets because this is a big economic opportunity if appropriately done," Canete said.
The original "clean development mechanism" developed under the UN Kyoto Protocol did not work, he said.
"We have to build a system that is sustainable, transparent and accountable," so that people buying the allowances know that they represent real reductions in emissions, he said.
The conference is to include representatives from civil society and academia to reflect on how to make such a market work.
The EU was in a good position to help broker the global carbon market rules as it would not be using these mechanisms itself before 2030 at least, Canete said.
The EU plans to meet its own binding target to cut domestic emissions by at least 40% on 1990 levels by 2030 by using its own measures, including the EU Emissions Trading System, and targets to boost renewables and energy efficiency.
But the EU may need global market mechanisms to meet its goal to cut emissions by 80-90% by 2050, Canete said.
"So then they have to be very sound rules," he said.
-- Siobhan Hall, email@example.com
-- Edited by Annie Siebert, firstname.lastname@example.org