Samenhang tussen handel, klimaatverandering en energie

In november 2006 gaf het in Genève gevestigde Internationale Centrum voor Handel en Duurzame Ontwikkeling een studie uit over de samenhang tussen handel en duurzame energie. Omdat handel en transport tweelingen zijn, en transport energie kost die tot aanzienlijke CO2-uitstoot leidt, kan het verband niet worden omzeild.

Ook Mandelson begeeft zich - nu het WTO-overleg wat slabakt – op dit terrein. Zie helemaal onderaan dit bericht.

korte inleiding op de studie van het ICTSD

In order to embark on the transition to a sustainable energy future – a future in which greenhouse gas concentration would be stabilized at a level that prevents dangerous interference with the climate system – governments and the private sector, civil society and international organisations must understand and address the challenges posed by developments in the global energy sector. Trade policy strategies must also deal with these processes in a comprehensive manner. Failure to manage the transition will not only lead to negative environmental, social and economic impacts, but could also result in political conflicts and violence as a consequence of power struggles over access to dwindling energy resources. The multilateral trading system will be directly and indirectly impacted by the transition to a sustainable energy future, and will in turn exert substantial influence on the necessary and far-reaching transition.

 The International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) was established in Geneva in September 1996 to contribute to a better understanding of development and environment concerns in the context of international trade.

 Linking Trade, Climate Change and Energy



Climate change has emerged as one of the greatest threats to sustainable development. While a great deal of attention has been paid to greenhouse gas emissions from energy consumption, very little analytical work has been conducted to explore the impact of international trade flows on global warming and the role of trade policies and international regulatory frameworks as possible solutions. The International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) is proud to release this special collection of issue briefs addressing this emerging policy area, produced by ICTSD analysts and a wide range of other contributors on the occasion of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Nairobi, held 6-17 November 2006.

The global economy is dependent upon oil and other fossil fuels, and this dependency (of producers and consumers alike) is fed through international trade. Weaning ourselves off carbon without causing economic dislocation poses a tremendous challenge. Governments must move quickly to make a rapid transition in the sources of energy on which we rely, whilst balancing social, economic, and environmental concerns.

Reversing global warming requires citizen action and corporate responsibility, public and private investment, and the implementation of effective regulatory regimes. Part of the good news is that, while in the past, the economy vs. environment debate has hampered progress on the environment, many policy-makers now realise that a concerted effort to ensure that economic activity is sustainable is the most cost-effective strategy. A consensus is emerging that technology innovation and transfer can play a major role in protecting the environment while fostering economic development, but achieving the right balance between private and public action is daunting.

Trade liberalisation and the mitigation of and adaptation to climate change are currently managed under separate and complex legal regimes. The integration of these regimes is essential to ensure that domestic and international measures to address climate change and the international trade system are mutually supportive.

Infusing climate-friendly measures – including incentives such as climate standards, strategically targeted subsidies and liberalisation in environmental goods and services – within the various trade regimes could make a major contribution toward a sustainable energy transition, and climate change mitigation and adaptation.

This special collection of issue briefs begins with an introduction that summarises ICTSD’s analysis of the key links between three broad areas that are too frequently addressed in isolation from each other: trade, climate change and energy. The second section explains more specifically some of the most important issues facing policy-makers concerned with international policy on energy and trade, including the specific circumstances in Asia and especially China. The final section focuses on bioenergy, looking both at the global picture and at experiences in Africa, Asia and Brazil.

The collection features a contribution by Ted Turner, a leader in the growing movement in support of clean energy and the chairman of the United Nations Foundation. We are also pleased to present other authors from a range of perspectives. Focusing on the potential of biofuels to simultaneously provide economic opportunity and reverse global warming, such new voices set the stage for the issues explored here.

All contributions represent the views of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the official positions of the organisations with which they are affiliated.

Erwin Rose and Moustapha Kamal Gueye produced and edited this publication. Mr. Rose has served as a senior trade and environment negotiator for the United States. Dr. Gueye leads ICTSD’s environment programme.

This collection builds upon work that ICTSD has initiated on the links between trade, climate change and energy.

It inaugurates a new series on Trade and Sustainable Energy that will include publications that address a range of cross-cutting, regional and country-specific topics. We hope you will find these papers to be stimulating, informative and useful. We welcome your comments.

Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz

Chief Executive, ICTSD

Second massage :

061117 Mandelson Calls For Work On Climate, Trade Links

Speaking in Beijing, China on 10 November, EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson called for analytical work on trade policy and climate change. Noting that economic growth and trade can act as drivers of climate change, he said they can - and should - also be part of the solution to global warming.

Mandelson's trip to China took place as delegates at a global meeting on climate change gathered in Nairobi, Kenya, to discuss future commitments under the climate regime. They also discussed funding for adaptation activities in developing countries (see Bridges Trade BioRes, 3 November 2006, This meeting is set to close on 17 November.

Mandelson at his "first ever" discussion on trade and climate

Speaking at a seminar on trade and climate change at the China Institute for International Studies, Mandelson stressed the need for China to balance continued economic growth with environmental concerns. While acknowledging the need for industrialised countries to take the lead in combating climate change, he said rapidly growing developing countries like China will also be central to any solutions.

On trade and climate change, he posed key questions, including: "Are the rules of WTO up to date? Do we need to change them, for example by allowing lower tariffs for products produced in a climate friendly way. Or on products which are very energy efficient? Are our regimes for agricultural subsidies in tune with the potential role that alternative biofuels can play in reducing emissions and absorbing green house gases?"

Mandelson went on to announce that a new Chinese-European task force on sustainable trade would be set up to deal with these issues.

De Villepin calls for carbon tax on goods from polluters

Also during the Nairobi meeting on climate change, French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin made a controversial proposal on placing a carbon tax on imports from countries that do not sign onto emissions reduction targets during the post-Kyoto commitment period after 2012. Speaking at a separate meeting on sustainable development, he said "We have decided to reinforce the principle that the polluter pays." Mr. de Villepin added that he would work out further details for this proposal over the coming months and present it at the European level. Members of the European Parliament have previously issued similar calls for border-tax adjustments (see Bridges Trade BioRes, 18 March 2005,

De Villepin's ideas were rejected by major countries that could be the targets of such taxes, including the US and Canada.

The two-week meeting of the twelfth conference of the parties (COP-12) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the second meeting of the parties (MOP-2) to its Kyoto Protocol has attracted close to 6000 people. In addition to the negotiations themselves, participants attended numerous side events showcasing ongoing work and ideas for combating climate change from around the world.

The next issue of Bridges Trade BioRes will provide reporting and analysis on the UN Climate Change Conference in Nairobi.

For a full report of the COP-12 and MOP-2, including daily updates, see IISD Linkages at

from : Bridges Trade BioRes, Vol 6, Nr 20, Nov 17, 2006

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