Research Programs: Special Projects

Survey of International Trends and Discussions in Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction Projects under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change

Project Leader/Sub-Leader

KAINOU Kazunari

KAINOU Kazunari (Fellow)



Under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), parties to the Kyoto Protocol, including Japan and the European Union, are allowed to use the Kyoto Mechanisms--emissions trading, Joint Implementation (JI), Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), etc.--in the first commitment period from 2008 to 2012 in addition to their domestic activities to achieve their respective greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction commitments. Specifically regarding CDM and JI, under which investments in emission reduction projects in third countries can be taken as emission credits, various problems have been pointed out and, accordingly, discussions are now underway to make changes to the mechanisms.

In the 16th Conference of Parties (COP-16) to the UNFCCC held in Cancun, Mexico in 2010, a new framework differing from that of the Kyoto Protocol and involving the participation of the United States, China, and other developing countries was set up as part of the Cancun Agreement. Under the new framework, participating countries or regions would voluntarily set GHG emission reduction targets, and the achievement of the targets would be made subject to multilateral review. It was also agreed that a new set of flexible mechanisms, similar to the Kyoto Mechanisms, be institutionalized under the new framework. However, the specifics of such flexible mechanisms have yet to be worked out.

This survey seeks to investigate, analyze, and evaluate the progress going forward in reforming the Kyoto Mechanisms under the Kyoto Protocol, and moves toward that in developing a new mechanism with an aim to put forward international policy proposals for efficient and effective GHG emission reductions in the future.

September 14, 2011 -