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Market-based Instruments for Greenhouse Gas Mitigation in Brazil: Experiences and Prospects

DOI https://doi.org/10.21552/CCLR/2012/4/232

Michael Mehling, Sebastian Mielke


Brazil has become an increasingly important participant in the discussion about climate change, combining an active role in climate diplomacy with credible domestic policy efforts. Market-based instruments have featured prominently in its domestic policy landscape, with carbon markets envisioned both at the federal and regional level. Aside from successful participation in the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and some progress in the creation of voluntary offset markets, however, the pathway towards a domestic carbon market has so far been fraught by delays and ongoing uncertainty. Still, Brazil can build on proven institutional structures, quantified emissions limitation targets, and new rules on the collection of emissions data and sectoral mitigation plans to establish robust market-based instruments. A carbon market can help leverage its vast mitigation potential to abate greenhouse gas emissions at sufficient scale while limiting the cost of compliance for domestic entities. Given its unique emissions profile, however, Brazil should not focus on becoming a net seller of carbon credits or allowances to foreign entities, but should instead harness the opportunity to create an ambitious, welldesigned market and thereby become a leader on climate change mitigation in Latin America.

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