On the contribution of labelled Certified Emission Reductions to sustainable development: A multi-criteria evaluation of CDM projects
The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) has a twofold objective, to offset greenhouse gas emissions and to contribute to sustainable development in the host country. The contribution to the latter objective seems marginal in most CDM activities. Also, CDM activities are unevenly spread among developing countries. In response to these concerns, initiatives with the objective of promoting CDM projects with broad local sustainable development dividends have been launched, such as the Gold Standard and the Community Development Carbon Fund. The Gold Standard label rewards best-practice CDM projects while the Community Development Carbon Fund focuses on promoting CDM activities in underprivileged communities. Using a multi-criteria method, the potential contribution to local sustainable development of those CDM projects with particular attributes is compared with ordinary ones. This evaluation suggests that labelled CDM activities tend to slightly outperform comparable projects, although not unequivocally.
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