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Read the latest climate policy analysis and opinion pieces from the Climate Strategies network.

This blog includes posts previously published on the former joint Climate Strategies – Climate Policy Journal blog.

Deforestation leakage, policy spill-overs and the case for integrated management

Deforestation leakage occurs when measures to protect forests lead to a shift of deforestation to another region. What measures can help reduce this leakage?

Transparency Adherence Indices: A first step in assessing country compliance with global climate transparency requirements

One of the few legally binding obligations of the 2015 Paris Agreement is for countries to be transparent to each other about what…

Successful industrial climate policy depends on tailor-made cluster approaches

To learn more about this topic, download this policy brief. The recently strengthened European greenhouse gas emission reduction targets in the…

Climate contribution: a smart policy solution for decarbonising material production and use in the EU

The climate contribution is a weight-based charge on consumption of carbon-intensive materials sold for final use in Europe.

Climate Migration and Health System Preparedness in the United States

The United States is very focused on crisis management—that is crises that are dramatic and short in duration. With some pointed…

Reports on Climate Change Conferences, 2000-2019

We are delighted to share this collection of editorials and reports on different Conference of the Parties (COPs) and Subsidiary Bodies…

Carbon Pricing and COVID-19

The COVID-19 crisis has disrupted consumption, production and government policy-making. This post and the accompanying paper argue that, despite these challenges,…

How to engage people with climate change in times of COVID-19, economic distress and rising populism

At this moment, countries worldwide face three main crises: the COVID-19 pandemic, a looming economic crisis, and a liberal democracy crisis,…

Modelling net-zero emissions energy systems requires a change in approach

Many countries and corporations are in the process of establishing net-zero GHG emission targets. One estimate suggests that such targets are…

It’s not what you say about climate change, it’s how you say it…

Increasing discontent from many – embodied in the gilets jaunes protests in France and around the world – shows that the…

Politics of carbon pricing

Carbon pricing is often hailed as the key policy response to address climate change. We question this view as it tends…

Carbon Contracts for Differences: An essential instrument for European industrial decarbonisation

Carbon Contracts for Differences (CCFD) are one of the elements of the policy package developed by the Climate Friendly Materials Platform…

What are the challenges and opportunities for factoring climate action into the UAE’s and Oman’s economic diversification strategies?

Climate change brings both challenges and opportunities for economic growth in oil producing countries, which are highly reliant on oil-export revenues….

Responding to climate mitigation policymaking as a complex policy problem: the role of approach

COVID-19 has thrown the interconnected and complex systemic nature of our global society into stark relief.  It has also sparked many…

Carbon Lock-in and development in Latin America and the Caribbean: risks and opportunities for recovery from Covid-19

Countries around the world are thinking about how to address the widespread repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic after the urgent and…

Addressing loss and damage through Parametric Insurance Schemes

We know that climate change causes more extreme weather – such as longer and more frequent droughts and more powerful hurricanes…

Even ‘climate progressive’ nations fall far short of adopting Paris-compliant pathways

With Covid-19 dominating the news, it’s easy to forget the greater threat posed by climate change. Whilst recent months have seen…

Giving climate policy advice that makes a difference: targeting government agencies

The Climate Strategies and Climate Policy Blog is full to the brim with blog posts providing important scientific insights on how…

The Green Rebound: Thoughts on mobilising the COVID responses for climate action

Back in late March, when the corona crisis had finally forced us all from our offices and into our homes, Climate…

Consequences of adding ‘loss and damage’ as a third pillar of international climate change law

‘So what is your biggest concern going into Paris?’ Rolling Stone Magazine asked then US Secretary of State John Kerry in…

Usual and unusual suspects: what network analysis can tell us about climate policy integration

In one of the key scenes of the legendary film Casablanca (1942), Captain Louis Renault orders his police officers to “round…

Climate justice is not a nice to have, it’s the heart of climate action

By Andrzej Blachowicz and Julie-Anne Hogbin, Climate Strategies Since the idea of a Just Transition first emerged from the labour union…

Climate Policy and Carbon Leakage: analysis and updated perspectives in Brazil

After COP 21, with the adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, the outlook for carbon pricing policies has been…

What a small country’s successes and mistakes can teach about emission pricing

I’m from Aotearoa, New Zealand, and I really love its land and people, but I am fully aware that from a…

Lessons from six decades of hard coal production phase-out in Germany

Taking the Paris Agreement seriously, implies a coal phase-out for all industrialized countries by 2030. In our paper in Climate Policy…

Reframing Ocean Acidification in the Context of the UNFCCC

In the mid- to late 2000s, the marine science and policy community was grappling with a newly recognized threat to the…

Can NDCs reconcile objectives of ensuring universal access to affordable energy services, energy security, and fostering sustainable energy systems?

The case of North Africa: Given increasing population, urbanization and improvement in living standards in the North African countries, energy demand…

NDCs to integrate sectors using the Nexus Approach? Linking Brazil’s agricultural exports to action against deforestation

As the threats to the Amazon forest grow in intensity, it is becoming clear that Brazil’s plans for the ‘development’ of…

On both sides of the Atlantic, voters want rapid action on climate change

Recent climate assessments have stressed two key messages. First, to avert irreversible damage from climate change, ambitious measures need to be…

Transformation as liberation: what the world needs now more than ever is courageous leadership

Transformation is a term we often hear. It highlights the deep changes required in the organization of economics, technology and society…

Blue COP parties should look to Antarctic Blue Carbon for vision of non-market cooperative approach to emission reduction

From 2 to 13 December 2019, the international community will meet for the 25th Conference of the Parties (COP25) to the…

Putting equity into practice

Equity is important when we take stock of action on climate change. Equity and ambition go together, because the climate is…

Climate policy integration in the Mexican energy sector

How can transformative policies be designed and implemented across sector boundaries? Scholars have compared the quest for policy coordination and coherence…

Trump will not stop the Death Spiral for U.S. coal

US President Donald Trump has claimed that environmental and climate policy were to blame for the decline of U.S. coal –…

Should renewable energies be subsidised even when CO2 emissions are covered by an Emission Trading System?

In many jurisdictions worldwide, CO2 emissions from electricity generation are covered by an emission trading system (ETS), while renewable electricity generation…

Strategies and policies for ‘just transitions’ away from fossil fuels

At the recent UN Climate Action Summit in New York, world leaders were reminded of the urgent task they face in…

Electricity access in Nigeria – shaping climate narratives compatible with national discourses

In the preamble to the Paris Agreement the parties emphasize “the intrinsic relationship that climate change actions, responses and impacts have…

Political acceptability of climate policies: do we need a ‘just transition’ or simply less unequal societies?

This blog post is partly based on the policy paper published in the journal Climate Policy: ‘Job Losses and the Political…

Carbon pricing moves in clusters – when is the right time to catch it?

It may seem that after the Yellow Vests in France and the popular vote defeat of the carbon tax in the…

Sustaining Bhutan’s carbon neutral pledge: underlying challenges

The need for action on climate change is now hotter than ever before – the Greta Thunberg movement is demanding more…

Uncertainty about conditional NDCs heightens risks to the Paris Agreement

The Paris Agreement’s success depends on Parties’ implementation of their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) towards the Agreement’s goals. No less than…

Temperature ‘overshoot and peak shaving’ strategy as risky as sub-prime mortgages

Since the adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, global CO2 emissions continue to rise.  The Paris goal of limiting…

Beyond carbon pricing: policies for carbon dioxide removal

With the recent news that the UK and Ireland have committed to carbon neutrality by 2050, and the EU considering the…

The elephant in the room: fossil fuel non-proliferation

There is a huge elephant in the world of climate policy that no one wants to name. The burning of fossil…

How do countries’ Paris pledges draw on local government, private sector and civil society climate action?

The window for tackling climate change is narrowing. Current national climate policies fall short of what’s needed to address climate change,…

Vanuatu: the challenging path to achieve redress for loss and damage

Eighty-three islands with a combined population of 288, 000 are facing an existential threat. But in the face of increasing loss…

The impact of implementing a climate deposit on carbon-intensive materials in Europe

The production of basic materials like steel, cement and aluminium accounts for around 25% of global greenhouse gas emissions. These emissions…

Missed synergies: the disconnect between climate action plans and development agendas

It is a truth widely acknowledged that domestic climate plans under the UN climate process are almost impossible to compare. That…

A novel approach to reducing nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture

The carbon offset market has been around for more than 15 years and projects have been created for forests, mines, grasslands,…

Inclusive Transformation of the European Materials Sector

Production of basic materials (cement, iron and steel, paper and board, aluminum, as well as chemicals and petrochemicals) account for around…

Holding cities accountable for their mitigation commitments

Cities have become a major actor in climate change mitigation, at least if you follow the announcements of progressive majors and…

Solar geoengineering, governance, and parametric insurance

Solar geoengineering – or technological interventions to reflect a small portion of incoming sunlight to partially offset the effects of climate…

Climate policies in South Africa must be expanded beyond pricing mechanisms to reduce poverty

The good news is that we can reduce poverty and emissions at the same time in highly emissions intensive developing economies….

Coral reefs are in hot water – we may need geoengineering to cool things down

Coral reefs are among the great natural wonders of the earth, but they are in hot water. The IPCC projects that…

Looking beyond the “energy trilemma” – the role of energy industry goals in explaining climate policy ambition

To prevent dangerous levels of climate change, the Paris Agreement defined a target of limiting global warming to 2°C. This target…

Cut price air fares demand new more efficient climate policy instruments

Public understanding that air travel is problematic from a climate perspective seems to be increasing. One manifestation of this is that…

Bye, bye global carbon market?

Our new article with David Victor and Arild Underdal in Climate Policy looks systematically at the political economy of the diffusion…

Including Animal-to-Plant Protein Shifts in Climate Change Mitigation Policy: A Proposed Three-step Strategy

In my new article published in Climate Policy, I outline the need for strong and rapid greenhouse gas reductions from the…

What Drives Adoption of Clean Technologies in Developing Countries?

The 2018 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) special report (SR1.5) finds that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require anthropogenic…

Governance of Bioenergy with Carbon Capture and Storage

Accounting, Rewarding, and the Paris Agreement In a newly published article in Climate Policy, I explore some governance issues associated with…

What Could the Global Climate Regime Learn From Transitional Justice Experiences?

With the recent surge of nationalism across many countries, efforts to build solidarity in the global climate regime might appear excessively…

Addressing Political and Technical Challenges of Measuring Adaptation

The Paris Agreement is widely recognised as an exciting step forward in the world’s fight against climate change. One element that…

Learning From the Past to Bring the Paris Agreement Climate Goals Closer Within Reach

The Talanoa Dialogue in the UNFCCC [United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change] negotiations extends a broad invitation to share low-carbon…

National Action on Climate Change Now Covers 89% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions. How has this been Achieved?

Our new study published by Climate Policy finds that national climate action has spread rapidly, and that this spread is strongly…

U.S. Protectionism is Undermining Climate Cooperation and Free Trade: Here’s How to Address Both

Countries affected by U.S. tariff increases are weighing their options for retaliation. Many of the same countries have pledged to lead…

Why Do we Keep Trying to Optimise for One, All Powerful Decision Maker?

It’s widely accepted that responding to climate change is difficult because it requires transformation of a complex socio-technical systems and is…

Aligning Climate Action with National Interest and the Short-Term Focus of Governments

“The virtues are lost in self-interest as rivers are lost in the sea”  Franklin D. Roosevelt   “Governing for the future is ……

The U.S. Clean Power Plan: Design and Challenges to Core Stakeholder Participation

The Clean Power Plan (CPP) was the regulatory cornerstone of the U.S.’ Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to reduce greenhouse gas…

Carbon Pricing in Practice: Lessons from Existing ETS Regimes

Since more than 40 countries have already implemented carbon pricing policies of some kind, there is much that other countries contemplating…

Mobilising Africa’s Domestic Energy Sources

Shortly after assuming office, the new President of the African Development Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, challenged Africa to “develop its energy mix,…

Capitalise, Leverage, and Diversify: Africa’s GCF Portfolio and Opportunities for Engagement

Along with the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Green Climate Fund (GCF or the Fund hereafter) serves as an operating entity…

The Battle of Economic Structure and China’s Future Carbon Emissions

For global climate change, a big challenge is that China (specifically Mainland China as referred to in this blog post) has…

China’s National ETS: What are the Key Challenges for Establishing an MRV System?

An effective system for monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) is the cornerstone of any carbon emissions trading scheme (ETS). A key…

A Dirty Business: Russia, Climate Change and the Mining Industry

When people think of Russia and the environment, they tend to think of the big, environmental catastrophes of the Soviet past…

The Political Struggle in Eliminating Coal

Advancements in renewable energy and natural gas have appeared to make coal a thing of the past, with the costs of…

Empirical Calibration of Climate Policy using Corporate Solvency

The fundamental goal of climate policy is to incentivise emissions reductions and the transition to lower carbon processes and technologies. When…

Assessing the US Retreat from the Paris Agreement: Backtracking to Kyoto?

Perhaps the most widely debated event in global climate policy since the Paris Agreement’s adoption in 2015 was the United States’…

Will Social Movements Focused on Fossil Fuel Supply Help Solve the Climate Crisis?

In an article just published in Climate Policy, I discuss the rise over the past decade of the “keep-it-in-the-ground” movement –…

Beyond Facilitative Accountability in the Paris Agreement: Three Additional “Accountability Pathways”

During the UN Climate Conference of the Parties (COP 23) in Bonn, the fourth workshop of the Facilitative Sharing of Views…

Realising Fossil Fuel Subsidy Reform through Trade Agreements

 STORY HIGHLIGHTS When the WTO’s eleventh Ministerial Conference meets in December 2017, Members can make a significant contribution to the 2030…

What if Negative Emissions Fail at Scale?

It is recognised in the climate science community that literature and research informing the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and…

Fairness in the Eyes of Parties to the Paris Agreement: What Explains Divergences?

The question of how to differentiate efforts fairly has always been central and controversial in UN climate negotiations. The UN Framework…

Living in a Material World: A Win-Win for Improving Energy Efficiency?

Understanding the role of materials in the supply chain can give us a truer picture of global emissions, as well as…

Non-State Actors are Here to Stay, but Delivery Mechanisms Need Improvement

The surge in transnational governance schemes led by non-state actors can be traced back to the incipient globalisation that followed the…

Five Ways to Address Fossil Fuel Subsidies through the WTO and International Trade Agreements

Can the international trade system be a catalyst for reforming fossil fuel subsidies (FFS) to help relieve the burden on the…

Liability for Loss and Damage from Climate Change

The question whether countries can be held liable for climate change damages has become an important issue in the UN climate…

Read All About It!? Media, Accountability and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change

As the curtains closed on the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP22) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change…

Lessons from European Climate Monitoring Crucial for Paris Agreement Success

As the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 22) in Marrakech draws to a close, it is becoming…

What Next for Building an EU Energy Union?

A new Special Issue of the Climate Policy Journal focuses on the governance of European climate change efforts.  Drawing on the…

Kyoto Protocol Countries Achieved Full Compliance with Targets

All 36 countries that committed to emission caps under the Kyoto Protocol on climate change complied with their commitments, according to…

Climate Finance: Time to Know Who Gives What

As the first climate change negotiations after December’s landmark Paris Agreement  open in Bonn this week,  controversies around levels of funding for…

How Transitional Justice Can Help Climate Negotiations

Transitional justice – a theory and practice enabling purposeful transitions from periods of deep injustices into more peaceful regimes  – was probably not…

Could Lessons from Transitional Justice Help to Realise a Fair and Effective Global Response to Climate Change?

By Joy Hyvarinen Many have welcomed the new Paris Agreement on climate change, but there is also recognition of its weaknesses….

Aviation, Shipping and Climate Change Policy

By Alice Bows-Larkin “All adrift” was many years in the making. My research journey started with a focus on aviation and climate…

Adaptation and the Private Sector

By Pieter Pauw The issue of private sector adaptation and adaptation finance is hotly debated by researchers, climate negotiators, business and civil…

Developing a Sectoral New Market Mechanism

By Wolfgang Obergassel, Hans Bolscher, Jeroen van der Laan, Jelmer Hoogzaad and Jos Sijm At the 2011 COP in Durban, Parties decided…

From Lima to Paris, Part 2: Injecting Ambition

By Michael Grubb, Heleen de Coninck and Ambuj D. Sagar In Climate Policy’s latest editorial, Editor-in-Chief, Michael Grubb, together with Climate Strategies Chair…

Insights from South Africa

By Emily Tyler and Brent Cloete The Paris COP in November 2015 is expected to usher in a dramatic change in the…

The Political Economy of Readiness for REDD+

By Peter Minang and Meine van Noordwijk The REDD+ process is an internationally agreed mechanism whereby developing countries are rewarded for reducing…

Global Climate Policy Conference (GCPC) 2014: Summary and Reflections

By Heleen de Coninck, with contributions from Climate Strategies and CDKN teams What can researchers contribute to the current efforts to break the…

The UNFCCC: 20 Years On

By Joanna Depledge Twenty years ago today, on 21 March 1994, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change came into…

Going Beyond Two Degrees?

By Tim Rayner and Andrew Jordan As the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change convenes…

The Changing Geopolitics of Climate Change

By Charlotte Streck Over the last three decades, climate change has graduated from an environmental concern to a matter of geopolitics…

Consumption-Based Greenhouse Gas Accounting: A “Policy Journey”

By John Barrett While there have been a number of papers that calculate consumption-based GHG emissions, we were keen to present…

Was Blocking SBI in Bonn Justified?

By Anna Korppoo I was asked after Bonn whether Russia, Ukraine and Belarus blocking SBI seemed justified. Blocking SBI (or any…

Carbon Fiddles While the Planet Burns

By David Levy A milestone on the road to catastrophic climate change was reached last Thursday, May 9th, when the Mauna…

More Democratic Legitimacy through Civil Society Involvement in the UNFCCC Negotiations?

By Robert Gampfer Over the past two decades, civil society organizations (CSOs) have become integral to global climate negotiations. In 2011,…

Dawn at Doha?

In this latest editorial for Climate Policy (vol.13, no.3), Editor-in-Chief Michael Grubb puts forward his perspective on the Doha Climate Conference…

Low Carbon Drivers for a Sustainable World – or is a 2 Degree Target Just a Fantasy?

Some reflections on the Climate Policy Special Issue  (vol 13, supp 01, 2013) “Low carbon drivers for a sustainable world”. 

The Conundrum Expanded: New perspectives on Climate Politics in the US Congress

By Dana R. Fisher and Joseph Waggle November 2012 was a fantastic time to be a progressive American. On 6 November,…

Australia into the fray – by Frank Jotzo

By Frank Jotzo At the Doha COP, Australia announced it will come on board Kyoto 2, with a commitment to reduce…

US Presidents and the Ratification Conundrum

By Guri Bang, Jon Hovi and Detlef L. Sprinz Since 1990, there has been a build up of 13 MEAS that…

Carbon Markets: Still Controversial After All These Years…

In June 2011,  Climate Policy published a review by Axel Michaelowa on the book “Upsetting the offset: the political economy of…

Durban: The Darkest Hour?

By Michael Grubb –
Where now for the global negotiations? Compared to the aspirations of two years ago, the outlook for the Durban COP looks grim. After the traumas of Copenhagen, the ambitions of Cancun were modest – to reach an agreement, almost any agreement. Many bitter pills were swallowed to that end. The resulting deal looked more like a broad update to the UNFCCC framework, than a serious proposal on what to do after the Kyoto Protocol’s first commitment period expires.