The Urban Institute Ireland of the University College of Dublin (UCD) is conducting a project for the European Commission entitled “Transatlantic Opportunities for Meeting Global Challenges in Energy Efficiency and Low Carbon Technology”. The project involves, inter alia, the writing of seven research papers that look at different aspects of energy efficiency in the EU and the US. The Ecologic Institute contributes a research paper on the differences between EU and US funding and funding mechanisms for energy efficiency projects in emerging economies.
Projects – Ecologic Legal
Ecologic Institute provides a case study on regulation and lessons learnt pertaining to the implementation of small-scale hydropower in Germany. The case study is one building block of a project funded by the Environmeng Agency of England and Wales allowing the EA to benefit from the experience of other EU Member States in complying with the regulation of environmental issues as part of hydropower project development.
Interest in small-scale hydropower (installations with a capacity of less than 5MW) is growing in England and Wales due to increasing interest inRead more
At the 2007 UN Climate Change conference in Bali, the contract parties of the Framework Convention on Climate Change resolved that a comprehensive climate protection agreement would be passed by the end of 2009 in order to replace the Kyoto Protocol, which expires in 2012. In this project, the lawyers of Ecologic Institute provide scientific assistance to the German Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety in representing German and EU positions in international climate change negotiations.
At the 1992 Framework Convention on ClimateRead more
Given the increasing importance of climate change, a number of related legislative activities in Germany have occurred. However the resulting climate change law is incomplete and not always coherent. On behalf of the Federal Environmental Agency, Ecologic Institute is developing an ambitious and consistent model for the federal climate change law. Ecologic is cooperating with Professor Michael Rodi from the University of Greifswald.
First, the development of such a model will demand comprehensive analysis of Germany´s current climate change law. SecondRead more
Differences in national climate protection policies can lead – at least in principle – to "carbon leakage", i.e. the relocation of industries to countries with less stringent climate change legislation and a subsequent increase in greenhouse gas emissions in those countries. In a legal study for the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA), the Ecologic Institute and WTI Advisors analyse whether measures to address carbon-leakage are compatible with EU and WTO law. The study is available for download.
Carbon leakage and how to address it is aRead more
Technology transfer is one of the central issues in the international climate negotiations, reflecting a general consensus that effectively mitigating climate change and adapting to it will require the wide-spread use of climate-friendly technologies. Despite this consensus, many of the details – such as funding, institutional mechanisms and the role of intellectual property – remain controversial. Through this project, the Ecologic Institute examined national and international proposals made in the context of recent UNFCCC technology negotiations. Prospective rules and mechanismsRead more
The project’s objective is to confer legal capacity on the Adaptation Fund Board in Germany. The Adaptation Fund Board (AFB) is the operating entity of the Adaptation Fund, a financial mechanism under the Kyoto Protocol. The Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol decided in 2008 that the Adaptation Fund Board be conferred such legal capacity as necessary for the discharge of certain functions. Ecologic Institute provides legal expertise to the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) regarding the German offer to host the Adaptation Fund Board and theRead more
In this project, Ecologic Institute provides legal expertise and support to the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety on current issues of international environmental law. Ecologic’s input includes legal opinions and drafting as well as developing and assessing options for and during international negotiations. The project’s objective is to enhance the implementation of the Ministry’s positions at the multilateral and bilateral level.
International environmental law is currently in a phase of consolidation.Read more
In late 2008, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown commissioned his Special Representative on Carbon Trading, Mark Lazarowicz MP, to draft a report identifying the current role of emissions trading systems and possible challenges going forward. Michael Mehling of the Ecologic Institute in Washington DC was asked to prepare one of four background papers for the main report. His study, entitled “Global Carbon Market Institutions: An Assessment of GovernanceRead more
Although climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time, the time scale for climate change targets at the international, European, and national level has, until now, been confined to 2020. Great Britain, the first country to go beyond this time scale, passed a climate protection law at the end of 2008 with climate protection goals going until 2050, entailing government reporting obligations and an independent advisory committee. On behalf of WWF Germany, Ecologic Institute researchedRead more
The Ecologic Institute analyzes the pertinence of using elements of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in shaping international environmental governance reform. Christiane Gerstetter, Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf and Susanah Stoessel, the authors of the study, conclude that the WIPO model is illustrative for the debate on reforming international environmental governance. At the same time, however, important disparities in the substance and policies ofRead more
In the framework of this project, Ecologic wrote a policy paper shedding light at the most important aspects of the relationship between trade and climate change policies. The policy paper investigates which trade-related policies should be adopted to combat climate change and reviews the compatibility of those measures with the law of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Particular attention is given to issues that are of relevance to developing countries.
Ecologic Institute provides a legal opinion on financial support for modernised small hydropower under the feed-in tariff scheme of the revised German Renewable Energy Act (EEG 2009). The costs for modernisation fulfilling the requirements of the feed-in tariff are frequently so high that they cannot be recovered by the feed-in tariff for one small hydropower installation alone. In its legal opinion for the environmental organisation Deutsche Umwelthilfe and the association "Buero am Fluss e.V., Ecologic Institute analyses whether each operator participating in joint measures could beRead more
In a briefing paper for the European Parliament's Temporary Committee on Climate Change, Ecologic analysed whether climate-related border adjustments are permissible under WTO law. Restrictions on international trade have been suggested as a means to address “carbon leakage” – the relocation of manufacturing activities (and thus greenhouse gas emissions) to states with less ambitious climate efforts and more relaxed environmental standards. The paper concludes that climate-related border adjustments are not, as a matter of principle, ruled out by international trade law, provided thatRead more
The project focuses on the further development of emissions trade as a central tool of climate protection. Ecologic gives legal and economic advice to support the legislative projects of the German Federal Ministry of the Environment. Other instruments such as the promotion of combined heat and power and the storage of captured carbon dioxide are also reviewed from a legal perspective.
The European Emissions Trade System is in its second trade period (2008-2012) and there is a European legislative procedure for further development thereafter. The system must be designed moreRead more