Status of Legal Challenges:
One of the key challenges identified by Parties to the Montreal Protocol as part of the Dubai Pathway on Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) relates to concerns raised about intellectual property rights. Because a large number of patents on low global warming potential (GWP) chemical substitutes for HFCs have been filed by a few transnational companies, a number of developing countries (Article 5 Parties) have raised concerns that these could impede their ability to meet HFC reduction goals, significantly increase the costs of doing so, or put their industries at a competitive disadvantage. This paper seeks to address what has been described as the primary concern related to patents—even if chemical companies in Article 5 Parties can develop their own methods of producing HFOs, they would be prevented (absent a license) from selling their products at home and in key markets abroad in countries where application patents have been granted to other companies until the time when these patents expire.
Ten Myths About Intellectual Property Rights and the Montreal Protocol
By Steve Seidel and Jason Ye
This brief explores myths and facts about intellectual property rights as they are covered in the Montreal Protocol, an agreement to limit high global warming potential (GWP) gases.
Approaches to Structuring a High Ambient Temperature Exemption
By Steve Seidel, Jennifer Huang, and Stephen O. Andersen
As parties to the Montreal Protocol consider an amendment to phase down hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), one critical concern is whether suitable alternatives for air-conditioning applications are available and adequately demonstrated for cooling capacity and energy efficiency under conditions of high ambient temperatures. Given the critical importance of these applications, one option being considered by parties is to provide a time-limited exemption for those uses in countries that could be adversely impacted by high ambient temperatures. This paper looks at a number of options for how such an exemption might be structured.
Leading by Example 2.0: How Information and Communication Technologies Help Achieve Federal Sustainability Goals
As the nation’s largest landlord, employer, fleet operator, and purchaser of goods and services, the federal government has the opportunity, if not the responsibility, to lead by example in moving our country in a more economically efficient and environmentally sustainable direction. Faced with tightening budgets, agencies are looking for new ways to reduce costs and increase productivity, while at the same time meeting a growing list of congressional and executive mandates to consume less energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Leading by Example: Using Information and Communication Technologies to Achieve Federal Sustainability Goals
RELATED RESOURCES & ACTIVITIES
Adapting to Climate Change: A Call for Federal Leadership
Joel B. Smith, Stratus Consulting, Inc.
Jason M. Vogel, Stratus Consulting, Inc.
Terri L. Cruce
Stephen Seidel, Pew Center on Global Climate Change
Heather A. Holsinger, Pew Center on Global Climate Change
This report highlights the important role of the federal government in reducing the vulnerability and strengthening the resiliency of our economy and natural resources in the face of these changes. In addition to managing a significant amount of land and infrastructure that will be affected by climate change, the federal government is uniquely positioned to provide the necessary leadership, guidance, information, and resources. While many efforts to adapt to climate change will occur at the state and local level, the federal government is a critical player in an effective and coordinated approach to climate change adaptation in the United States.
Drawing on the expertise of local, state, federal, and international leaders in this area, the authors provide concrete proposals for “mainstreaming” climate change adaptation within and across the federal government. They recommend three key components to create a new national adaptation program in the United States:
- A Strategic Planning Initiative to provide the overarching goals, objectives, and priorities for the program.
- A National Climate Service to provide stakeholders with much needed information on climate change impacts and adaptation options.
- An Adaptation Research Program to ensure that appropriate emphasis is placed on adaptation research as part of the larger federal climate research effort.
Additional Adaptation Content
- Adaptation Workshop - July 27, 2010
Federal Government Leadership: Mainstreaming Adaptation to Climate Change
- Climate Compass Blog Post: Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation Across the Federal Government
- ClimateWire: Pew Center Study Calls for a National Plan to Coordinate Adaptation to Climate (subscription required)
- Adaptation Resources Page