The role of internationally transferred mitigation outcomes in reducing global carbon emissions: Developing theoretical foundations and overcoming implementation challenges
The Paris Agreement, which was signed in December 2015 and went into effect in November 2016, outlines a framework for a new market mechanism that could incentivize countries to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOs). ITMOs enable countries to transfer emissions reduction credits between countries to efficiently find those areas where emissions could be reduced most efficiently and cost-effectively, thus resulting in greater net reductions globally. However, we still lack a coherent theoretical foundation for how ITMOs can be created and implemented, and it is therefore unclear how Canadian companies and the Canadian economy might benefit from this new market mechanism. In this project, a Postdoctoral intern will first develop a theoretical framework for ITMO creation, and apply this to study how Canadian liquified natural gas (LNG) producers could benefit from ITMO implementation. This includes understanding new carbon accounting methods, relevant technologies, and analyzing the business case and potential returns on investments into offsetting carbon emissions under difference scenarios. The partner organization (FortisBC) will benefit from a deeper understanding of whether and how it could implement ITMOs to gain a return on investment for upstream emissions reductions and create competitive advantages.