G7 Pivots Away From Zero-Sum Energy Politics – Embraces Low and Middle Income Countries (1)

“Together we are working against zero-sum competition and developing policies and practices that promote global trade and investment so that our incentives maximize clean energy deployment and jobs for every partner—and allow capital to flow into Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs),” according to a statement published today in Japan.

Up until now, huge economic powerhouses including the US, the EU and China have used up more than their fair share of the world’s ability to deal with greenhouse gas and have made off with an outsized portion of revenue and profits from pollution. Time to get real. Time to get less greedy?

The tone of this G7 statement seems welcoming of global collaboration…but immediate actions are needed and I can’t see any or many.

No more winner takes all?

“We recognize that achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement urgently requires significant new incentives, industrial policies, and public as well as private investments.

We recognize that the clean energy transition will require filling the investment gaps to lower the cost of energy transition globally.

We will work to ensure that our regulations and investments will make clean energy technologies more affordable for all nations and help drive a global, just energy transition for workers and communities that will leave no one behind.

We commit to transparency and coordination on our policies so that they serve our common goal of maximizing deployment of clean energy technologies and practices, promote fair and free trade and are mutually supportive and consistent with our commitment to our multilateral trading system as well as preserving a level playing field, and will refrain from taking measures that undermine these efforts.

Computing carbon intensity of traded goods

This section seems a bit new, though big companies including Wal Mart have been calculating the carbon footprint of products for years:

G7: “We recognize that the risk of carbon leakage may increase with more divergent climate policy ambition and will continue to work collaboratively, including with relevant international organizations, to address this risk.

“We request that the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) report to us on the progress of the Inclusive Forum on Carbon Mitigation Approaches (IFCMA) to explore methodological approaches for computing carbon intensity of goods or sectors.”

IFCMA: As of 30 January 2023, 133 countries around the world, representing around 91% of global GDP and covering around 83% of global emissions, have adopted net-zero carbon emissions targets. Consistent with the principles of the multilateral climate policy architecture as set out in the Paris Agreement, countries use or plan to use a widely varied set of emissions reduction policies – both price-based and non-price-based – as tailored to different national circumstances.

To achieve the shared global objective of net zero emissions, the key challenge is to optimise the combined global impact of all these individual emissions reduction efforts. This is what the IFCMA will help to facilitate through data and information sharing, mutual learning and inclusive multilateral dialogue.

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