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Climate Policy in Iran and the Case for Carbon Pricing journal article

Bahareh Ghafouri, Sven Rudolph

Carbon & Climate Law Review, Volume 15 (2021), Issue 3, Page 221 - 232

Iran has committed to a 4% reduction target by 2030; but as the Iranian economy is fossil fuel based, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions have continued to surge over the last decade. In this paper, we consider whether carbon pricing could help Iran to achieve its Paris targets. First, we describe current climate-related policies in Iran and survey relevant academic literature on their effectiveness. We then review carbon pricing designs in five countries with a comparable development status to Iran. Finally, we consider whether Iran’s current climate policies are adequate and what role carbon pricing could play in a future climate policy mix. The results of this study should enhance an understanding of Iran’s climate policy, which thus far has received little attention in research; and can be put to immediate use in shaping a sustainable climate policy strategy for Iran.

‘I Know What I Must Do. It’s just …!’Justice in Emissions Trading Design and the Recent Reforms in New Zealand journal article

Elena Aydos, Sven Rudolph, Achim Lerch

Carbon & Climate Law Review, Volume 14 (2020), Issue 2, Page 118 - 127

New Zealand's Zero Carbon Act passed parliament in 2019 with near-unanimous support, setting a new greenhouse gas emissions reduction target to net zero by 2050. At the centre of this commitment are the plans to strengthen the New Zealand Emissions Trading Scheme (NZ ETS). The NZ ETS started with predominantly unjust design features and is now undergoing a significant reform. Getting the details right is not only key to New Zealand's success in reaching its statutory commitments and enabling ambition under the Paris Agreement, but also to ensure that the NZ ETS becomes sustainable and fair. Greenhouse gas cap-and-trade (GHG CaT) program design has been predominantly guided by and analyzed from a traditional environmental economics perspective, with a focus on efficiency and effectiveness. Justice criteria, on the other hand, have been largely neglected. The article contributes to the scientific research on truly sustainable GHG CaT by surveying concepts of justice and proposing a comprehensive set of justice criteria for the design of GHG CaT which can be used to evaluate program design at an early stage of development as well as guide structural reviews of existing GHG CaT. Based on these criteria, the current design of the NZ ETS is evaluated. The analysis reveals that the NZ ETS so far has suffered from major design flaws. While there are promising signs that the scheme will become fairer in the near future, there is still scope for improvement for it to fully comply with ambitious and comprehensive sustainability criteria.

Climate Policy Made ‘Down Under’: The Political Economy of a New Carbon Market in Australia journal article

Elena Aydos, Sven Rudolph

Carbon & Climate Law Review, Volume 12 (2018), Issue 4, Page 304 - 315

In the early 2000s fierce battles were fought over carbon pricing in Australian politics. And while the Paris Agreement might facilitate a new push in this direction, stakeholders still struggle with the political legacy of these early debates. Against this background, we evaluate Australia’s former carbon pricing initiatives based on ambitious sustainability criteria. Referring to ‘Public Choice’ arguments, we then use empirical data from a 2017 interview study to analyse the reasons for the eventual political failure of the schemes and for predicting the chances of a new carbon market in Australia. We mainly argue that the former Australian pricing schemes were overly ambitious, and while political barriers remain high, an already visible growing openness in the business community, combined with a possible change in government after the 2019 general election, might lead to a gradual implementation of a new scheme after 2019.

Public Participation in Market-based Climate Policy: A Political Economy Perspective and the Cases of Japan and Germany journal article

Sven Rudolph

Carbon & Climate Law Review, Volume 9 (2015), Issue 4, Page 328 - 341

Due to the increasing threat of irreversible, dangerous global warming, effective climate policy is one of the most urgent political challenges. And as mitigation costs are going to increase even in the case of cost efficient measures, government action against global warming needs the sovereign’s support. So what is the role of public participation in modern market-based climate policy? Public Choice theory has been analysing respective questions since the 1970s, mainly because economists’ recommendations for expanding the use of economic incentives had been ignored in practice. However, recently carbon taxes and cap-and-trade have been spreading, raising questions on the validity of Public Choice arguments anew. Against this background, the paper summarizes the hypotheses of Public Choice theory regarding public participation in climate policy instrument choice, surveys respective empirical studies, and adds new case study data on carbon market decision making in Germany and Japan. It mainly argues that public opinion will play an increasingly important role in effective and efficient climate policy, that political support by citizens becomes most effective via environmental groups’ activities, and that strengthening citizen participation calls for lowering information costs and for supporting the civil society.

Carbon Markets in Japan: Recent Experiences from CO2 Cap-and-Trade at the National and Local Level journal article

Sven Rudolph

Carbon & Climate Law Review, Volume 6 (2012), Issue 4,

Japan ranks amongst the biggest emitters of greenhouses gases in the world, but still lacks convincing policies to reach its climate targets. However, since 2005, Japan has been experimenting with cap-and-trade. By applying established environmental economics methods, this paper analyzes the most important programs, the national Japan Voluntary Emissions Trading Scheme (JVETS) and the local Tokyo Metropolitan Government Emissions Trading Scheme (TMG ETS). By doing so, the paper shows that in comparison JVETS can only be considered a pilot program with limited success, whereas the TMG ETS is more promising in design.

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