Major climate change initiative: International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP) launch

October 29, 2007 at 2:25 pm | Posted in British Columbia, California, Canada, Canadian provinces, Cap and trade, Carbon Action, Carbon emissions, Carbon markets, Carbon reductions, Climate change, EC, Emissions trading, Europe, European Commission, European countries, France, Germany, GHG emissions, Global carbon market, Governments, Greenhouse gases, ICAP, Lisbon, Low-carbon products, Nations, Netherlands, New Jersey, New York, New Zealand, Norway, Partnership, Portugal, Provinces, Public authorities, Regional GHG Initiative, States, U.S. states, UK, United Kingdom, United States, Western Climate Initiative | Leave a comment
Monday, October 29, 2007

Nations, States, Provinces Announce Carbon Markets Partnership to Reduce Global Warming

LISBON, PORTUGAL – A coalition of European countries, U.S. states, Canadian provinces, New Zealand and Norway today announced the formation of the International Carbon Action Partnership ( to fight global warming.

ICAP will provide an international forum in which governments and public authorities adopting mandatory greenhouse gas emissions cap and trade systems will share experiences and best practices on the design of emissions trading schemes. This cooperation will ensure that the programs are more compatible and are able to work together as the foundation of a global carbon market. Such a market will boost demand for low-carbon products and services, promote innovation, and allow cost effective reductions so as to allow swift and ambitious global reductions in global warming emissions.

The ground-breaking international and interregional agreement was signed today by U.S. and Canadian members of the Western Climate Initiative, northeastern U.S. members of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, as well as European members including the United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal, France, the Netherlands, and the European Commission. New Zealand and Norway joined on behalf of their emissions trading programs.

Leaders attending the summit included: President José Sócrates, Council of the European Union and Prime Minister of Portugal; European Commission President José Manuel Barroso; Governor Jon Corzine, New Jersey; Governor Eliot Spitzer, New York and Premier Gordon Campbell, British Columbia. Gordon Brown, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and Arnold Schwarzenegger, Governor of California, participated with video messages.

ICAP will open lines of communication for sharing valuable information, such as research, effective policy initiatives, lessons learned and new developments. By working together to establish similar design principles, ICAP partners are ensuring that future market systems, in conjunction with regulation in the form of enforceable caps, will boost worldwide demand for low-carbon products and services, provide a larger market for innovators, and achieve global emissions reductions at the swiftest pace and lowest cost possible. The new partnership supports the current ongoing efforts undertaken under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which all ICAP members agree has a central role in fighting global warming.

Global warming is a problem that requires a global solution. ICAP will facilitate such a global solution by:

  • Rigorously and accurately monitoring, reporting and verifying emissions and working to determine reliable sources appropriate for inclusion in a globally linked program.
  • Encouraging common approaches and furthering partners’ together to expand the global carbon market, helping to prevent leakage.
  • Creating a clear price incentive to innovate, develop and use clean technologies.
  • Encouraging private investors to chose low-carbon projects and technologies, generating the flow of money needed to support a shift to a low-carbon future.
  • Providing flexible compliance mechanisms that ensure reliable reductions at the fastest pace and lowest cost.

The following signatories and/or participants of the event said:

Prime Minister Gordon Brown, United Kingdom: “The launch of the International Carbon Market Partnership is a truly significant step forward in the global effort to combat climate change. Building a global carbon market is fundamental to reducing greenhouse gas emissions while allowing economies to grow and prosper. Trading emissions between between nations allows us all to reach our greenhouse gas targets more cost-effectively. And it therefore allows us to reduce emissions more than we could by acting alone.”

Governor Jon Corzine, New Jersey: “My background as the former head of Goldman Sachs has given me a unique perspective on many market-based solutions to important public problems, such as environmental degradation. But it is my life in public service that has helped me understand that it will take the courage and commitment of a core set of leaders, like those of us gathered today, to drive implementation of smart, feasible, and measurable policies needed to address an issue as urgent as global warming.”

Governor Eliot Spitzer, New York: “Global warming is the most significant environmental problem of our generation, and by establishing an international partnership, we are taking the vital steps to address this growing concern. In the absence of federal leadership, New York is implementing a greenhouse gas emissions trading program that will achieve a 16 percent reduction in power plant emissions by 2019. Today, we continue that work by joining the International Carbon Action Partnership, or ICAP, where we can begin working with our global partners, share experiences and address issues of program design and compatibility, thereby strengthening our markets.”

Premier Gordon Campbell, British Columbia: “Tackling global warming requires international cooperation and collaboration unlike anything we have seen before. It is vitally important that as we design our own market systems we coordinate with other provinces, states, nations and continents. The partnership we have signed today opens the door, for the first time ever, to jurisdictions around the globe to share ideas and new technologies, and ultimately will lay the foundation for a compatible market-based system to trade carbon offsets and credits worldwide.”

John Hutton, secretary of state for Business, Enterprise, and Regulatory Reform, United Kingdom: “This initiative is an extremely important contribution to the global effort to solve the urgent problem of climate change. Business tells us they want clarity on what they will be asked to do, and that they prefer a market-based approach. That is why the global carbon market will be fundamental in the move to a low carbon economy, and why ICAP is such a valuable forum, with its practical emphasis on collaborating and sharing experience and expertise.”

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