Framework for carbon pricing further away than before Cancun

{lm_summary}

By ·

Jack Short, Secretary General of the International Transport Forum, the transport think tank at the OECD in Paris, believes that the agreement reached in Cancún will not increase pressure on the transport sector to reduce its CO2 emissions.

Transport is responsible for 23 percent of global CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion.

“The Cancun Agreements decided at COP 16 may have given new impetus to a stalled UN negotiating process but will have no direct impact on continued global growth of transport CO2 emissions,” said Short.

He said that despite conciliatory moves in the final hours of the conference, it now seems less likely that countries will be able to agree an extension of the Kyoto Protocol or an alternative, wider-ranging international treaty on Greenhouse Gas emissions reductions by 2012.

“This means that political pressure to reduce emissions in the transport sector will probably not increase over the next few years. In some cases it may indeed wane. In practice, carbon constraints will likely not become a defining factor for transport policy for several more years.”

Crucially, he added, lack of progress in Cancún and the postponement of emission trading schemes in the U.S. and Australia means they are moving away from setting an international framework for pricing carbon. For international shipping and aviation that are contemplating global market-based measures, this will translate into an increase in the cost of “decarbonization.”

Finally, noted Short current emission trajectories and the uncertain prospect for real emission reduction efforts after the Kyoto Treaty expires also highlight the heightened risk to transport infrastructure and networks from climate disruption.

On lessons for transport that can be drawn from Cancún, Short said:

“The first lesson is that countries should re-center their efforts on carbon reduction policies that have value for society beyond CO2 mitigation alone. This means focusing on policies that deliver strong co- benefits such as congestion reduction, enhanced energy security, pollutant reduction and fuel cost savings.”

The second lesson, Short added, is that prospects for significantly reducing emissions and avoiding disruptive climate change have not improved.

“Transport must now ready itself to adapt itself to a changing climate.”


About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

· All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Improving Packaging: The Cost of Shipping Air is Going Up
Retailers and manufacturers that insist on using inefficient and sloppy packaging methods—oversized boxes, inefficient packaging, poorly constructed palletized contents—are paying for their mistakes in sharply higher freight rates. Pitt Ohio White Paper, Logistics White Paper, Dimensional Packaging
Download Today!
From the July 2016 Issue
While it’s currently a shippers market, the authors of this year’s report contend that we’ve entered a “period of transition” that will usher in a realignment of capacity, lower inventories, economic growth and “moderately higher” rates. It’s time to tighten the ties that bind.
2016 State of Logistics: Third-party logistics
2016 State of Logistics: Ocean freight
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Getting the most out of your 3PL relationship
Join Evan Armstrong, president of Armstrong & Associates, as he explains how creating a balanced portfolio of "Top 50" global and domestic partners can maximize efficiency and mitigate risk.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
Regional ports concentrate on growth and connectivity
With the Panama Canal expansion complete, ocean cargo gateways in the Caribbean are investing to...
Digital Reality Check
Just how close are we to the ideal digital supply network? Not as close as we might like to think....

Top 25 ports: West Coast continues to dominate
The Panama Canal expansion is set for late June and may soon be attracting more inbound vessel calls...
Port of Oakland launches smart phone apps for harbor truckers
Innovation uses Bluetooth, GPS to measure how long drivers wait for cargo