Alternate Structures for Global Climate Action

Project Leads: Richard Stewart, Bryce Rudyk & Michael Oppenheimer

As a result of failures over many years to reach an encompassing international agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions, there is increasing recognition of serious problems in basic design features of the sole global climate change architecture, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. This recognition has provoked calls over the past few years about bottom up strategies for climate. Yet, there has been little serious and sustained work on the necessary characteristics of bottom up regimes that will avoid the structural failings of the UNFCCC.

This project is designed to contribute to the work of building alternative, more diverse, less the centralized global climate architectures. It will consider three strategies for structuring bottom up regimes, which we call a “building block approach.” These strategies aim to build transnational regulatory regimes, involving (at least initially) a limited number of public and/or private actors to undertake activities, often for reasons other than achieving greenhouse gas reductions, but that will achieve significant greenhouse gas reductions as a co-benefit. These strategies aim to complement the UNFCCC rather than serve as a substitute.

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