KEY CONTRIBUTIONS TO GLOBAL CLIMATE POLICY
For international efforts to combat climate change to succeed, the world’s countries must be able to agree on how to regulate global emissions of greenhouse gases and support climate adaptation and technology transfer in developing countries.
Cliporehas provided valuable scientific documentation for various purposes. These include negotiations in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and EU work to design the Emissions Trading Scheme and other policy instruments. Clipore assembled some 70 researchers to work on projects in the social sciences, and they published more than 200 academic articles during the programme period.
WHAT HAS THE PROGRAMME ACHIEVED?
Clipore has provided better knowledge of decision-making processes at international climate negotiations, partly thanks to a database composed of several thousand interview transcripts and questionnaire surveys from the UN climate summits. The research shows, for example, which of the big stakeholders — the EU, USA and China — are seen by other countries as leading in various stages of the work. This can be used to make future climate negotiations more effective.
The programme also involved studying the drivers of developing countries’ climate efforts. It has brought a better understanding of how politicians in India and elsewhere are trying to balance emission reductions and economic development while the country concerned is suffering heavy impacts from climate change. Projects have also studied the drivers of climate work in the USA, more of which has proved to be taking place in various states and in environmental legislation than in national politics.
Other results concern how focused initiatives within the UN climate agreement on combating deforestation are handled. One lesson is that these initiatives can become more cost-effective if, besides reducing climate impacts, they also seek to exert a positive effect on biodiversity. Researchers in Clipore also developed, for decision-makers, a map tool that shows where climate adaptation is needed to deal with raised sea levels and other impacts; where such measures are being planned; and where they are still lacking.
WHO HAS BENEFITED FROM THE RESEARCH?
The programme focused on a broad group of users: the Swedish Climate Delegation and international climate negotiators; decision-makers at national, European and global level; the business sector; environmental organisations; and other scientists in the field. With politicians, public agencies and businesses, numerous seminars to present current research and invite discussion have been held in Brussels, Washington, New Delhi and elsewhere.
Various users have shown a keen interest in the results of the programme, and explained that this is because the researchers worked closely with decision-makers and other stakeholders and succeeded in focusing on key knowledge requirements in climate policy. Another reason for this high profile is that Clipore has been perceived as an independent research programme. For example, research findings on distorting effects of companies receiving emission rights free of charge within the EU trading system aroused interest among both politicians and businesses ahead of the reform of the system.