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Nogent-sur-Marne, France

Li J.,CIRED | Colombier M.,Institute du developpement durable et des relations internationales
Climatic Change

The relevance and cost-effectiveness are key criteria for policymakers to select appropriate policy and economic instruments for reducing carbon emissions. Here we assess the applicability of carbon finance instruments for the improvement in building energy efficiency by adopting the high efficiency standards as well as advanced energy supply systems, building on a case study in a northern city in China. We find that upgrading the current Chinese BEE standard to one of the best practices in the world coupled with the state-of-the-art energy supply system implies an abatement cost at 16US$/tCO2, which is compatible with the international carbon market price. The institutional reorganization turns out to be indispensable to facilitate the implementation of the proposed scheme of local government-led energy efficiency programme in the form of programmatic CDM in China's buildings sector. We show that with international support such as carbon finance, the BEE improvement will facilitate city's transition to low-carbon supply in the longer term. More importantly, it is argued that demand-side energy performance improvement in buildings should be considered a prerequisite to shifting low-carbon energy supply technologies such as fuel-switching, renewable power generation and Carbon Capture and Storage to address climate mitigation in light of cost-effectiveness and environmental integrity. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Source

How to sustain rapid economic and urban growth with minimised detriment to environment is a key challenge for sustainable development and climate change mitigation in developing countries, which face constraints of technical and financial resources scarcity as well as dearth of infrastructure governance capacity. This paper attempts to address this question by investigating the driving forces of transport demand and relevant policy measures that facilitate mitigating GHG emissions in the urban transport sector in Indian cities based on a critical review of the literature. Our overview of existing literature and international experiences suggests that it is critical to improve urban governance in transport infrastructure quality and develop efficient public transport, coupled with integrated land use/transport planning as well as economic instruments. This will allow Indian cities to embark on a sustainable growth pathway by decoupling transport services demand of GHG emissions in the longer term. Appropriate policy instruments need to be selected to reconcile the imperatives of economic and urban growth, aspiration to higher quality of life, improvements in social welfare, urban transport-related energy consumption and GHG emissions mitigation target in Indian cities. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Vogt-Schilb A.,CIRED | Hallegatte S.,The World Bank
Energy Policy

Decision makers facing abatement targets need to decide which abatement measures to implement, and in which order. Measure-explicit marginal abatement cost curves depict the cost and abating potential of available mitigation options. Using a simple intertemporal optimization model, we demonstrate why this information is not sufficient to design emission reduction strategies. Because the measures required to achieve ambitious emission reductions cannot be implemented overnight, the optimal strategy to reach a short-term target depends on longer-term targets. For instance, the best strategy to achieve European's -20% by 2020 target may be to implement some expensive, high-potential, and long-to-implement options required to meet the -75% by 2050 target. Using just the cheapest abatement options to reach the 2020 target can create a carbon-intensive lock-in and make the 2050 target too expensive to reach. Designing mitigation policies requires information on the speed at which various measures to curb greenhouse gas emissions can be implemented, in addition to the information on the costs and potential of such measures provided by marginal abatement cost curves. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Policy instruments for carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology investment during the learning phase are analysed and compared. The focus is on specific barriers to investment in learning during early commercial deployment. Imperfections in the carbon price signal and market failures from barriers indicate a need for support during the learning investment phase and the initial roll out of CCS in electricity generation. Different ways for CCS technology to cross the so-called investment 'death valley' are analysed and compared: a command and control instrument (CCS mandate), investment support (grant, tax credit, loan guarantee, subsidy by trust fund) and production subsidies (guaranteed carbon price, feed-in price, etc.). Three criteria are used in this comparison: effectiveness, static efficiency and dynamic efficiency. Policy instruments need to be adapted to the technological and commercial maturity of the CCS system. Mandate policies require handling with much care, and subsidization mechanisms must be designed to be market-oriented. © 2012 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC. Source

The mainstream community of energy experts is not aware of the long-term impacts that carbon policies directly concerned with promoting the development of low-carbon technologies produce on the electricity market regime. Long-term market coordination should be replaced by public coordination with long-term arrangements. The current market coordination makes carbon pricing ineffective in orienting investors towards capital-intensive low-carbon technologies. Fossil fuel generation technologies are preferred because their investment risks are much lower in the market regime, even with a high but unstable carbon price. Thus, in order to avoid delaying investment that is aimed at the decarbonization of the electricity system, a number of new market arrangements that lower the investment risk of low-carbon technologies and provide output-based subsidization have or are being selected by governments. As the use of low-carbon equipment to produce electricity develops, long-term market coordination for other technologies (e.g. peaking units, combined cycle gas turbine) will fade away because they alter the market price setting. Thus it is likely that, in the future, public coordination and planning will replace the decisions of market players not only for low-carbon technologies but also for every other type of capacity development. Policy relevance The development of renewables as promoted by both feed-in tariffs and green certificate obligations, which answer to different market failures, is well known. Similar long-term arrangements, which both subsidize and de-risk low-carbon investments for every small-sized and large-sized technology, shift learning costs and risks onto consumers. Energy experts and regulators have ignored that the expansion and generalization of these arrangements are changing the coordination function of the electricity markets. Apart from those in the UK, they are still unaware of the impacts that such technology-focused policies produce on the electricity market regime. The transition from market coordination to public coordination, which is inconsistent with the market principles of European electricity legislation, and long-term contracting is inevitable and should be anticipated. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC. Source

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