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Does the Gold Standard label hold its promise in delivering higher Sustainable Development benefits? A multi-criteria comparison of CDM projects

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  • Drupp, Moritz A.

Abstract

The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) has a twin objective: to help developed countries reduce GHG emissions, and to support developing countries in achieving Sustainable Development (SD). As a response to the widespread criticism of the CDM's unsatisfactory SD record, initiatives have developed premium labels like the Gold Standard, which applies two additional 'screens' to filter CDM projects for higher SD benefits. In order to determine whether Gold Standard projects can be associated with higher local SD benefits, this paper evaluates the potential benefits of 48 CDM projects using a multi-criteria method and building on existing work. The 18 evaluated Gold Standard projects are compared to a 'representative portfolio' of 30 unlabeled CDM projects in order to capture the 'full' effect of the additional Gold Standard requirements, which is further decomposed into the two 'screen' effects. The results suggest that Gold Standard Certified Emission Reductions can be associated with higher potential local SD benefits when compared to the 'representative portfolio' of unlabeled CDM projects, while the comparison of projects of the same type remains inconclusive. The results support previous findings showing that renewable energy projects may deliver comparatively high SD benefits.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Policy.

Volume (Year): 39 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (March)
Pages: 1213-1227

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Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:39:y:2011:i:3:p:1213-1227

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/enpol

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Keywords: Clean Development Mechanism Sustainable Development Gold Standard label;

References

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  1. Giuseppe Munda, 1997. "Environmental Economics, Ecological Economics, and the Concept of Sustainable Development," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 6(2), pages 213-233, May.
  2. Giampietro, Mario & Mayumi, Kozo & Munda, Giuseppe, 2006. "Integrated assessment and energy analysis: Quality assurance in multi-criteria analysis of sustainability," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 59-86.
  3. Johannes Alexeew & Linda Bergset & Kristin Meyer & Juliane Petersen & Lambert Schneider & Charlotte Unger, 2010. "An analysis of the relationship between the additionality of CDM projects and their contribution to sustainable development," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 233-248, September.
  4. Nussbaumer, Patrick, 2009. "On the contribution of labelled Certified Emission Reductions to sustainable development: A multi-criteria evaluation of CDM projects," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 91-101, January.
  5. Lambert Schneider, 2009. "A Clean Development Mechanism with global atmospheric benefits for a post-2012 climate regime," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 95-111, May.
  6. van der Gaast, Wytze & Begg, Katherine & Flamos, Alexandros, 2009. "Promoting sustainable energy technology transfers to developing countries through the CDM," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 230-236, February.
  7. Muller, Adrian, 2006. "How to Make the Clean Development Mechanism Sustainable - The Potential of Rent Extraction," Working Papers in Economics 214, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  8. Olsen, Karen Holm & Fenhann, Jørgen, 2008. "Sustainable development benefits of clean development mechanism projects: A new methodology for sustainability assessment based on text analysis of the project design documents submitted for validatio," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 2773-2784, August.
  9. World Commission on Environment and Development,, 1987. "Our Common Future," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780192820808, September.
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Cited by:
  1. Nives Dolšak & Emily Crandall, 2013. "Do we know each other? Bilateral ties and the location of clean development mechanism projects," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 118(3), pages 521-536, June.
  2. Wang, Can & Zhang, Weishi & Cai, Wenjia & Xie, Xi, 2013. "Employment impacts of CDM projects in China's power sector," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 481-491.

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