Joint ICAP/NA2050 Public Workshop: Developing Industrial Benchmarks
Joint ICAP/NA2050 Public Workshop
“Developing Industrial Benchmarks”
September 24, 2012 – New York
Pace University, 1 Pace Plaza, NY 10038
In major OECD countries, direct and indirect emissions of GHG from industry account for up to one-third of total end-use greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Policymakers at a variety of government levels are considering policies to address these emissions. Benchmarking, which assesses GHG emissions performance across facilities or against a common standard, can be used in various policy approaches, including:
· Regulation of GHG emissions through a cap-and-trade program, along with free allocation of emissions allowances to industry sectors in proportion to output based on an emissions performance benchmark;
· Regulatory GHG performance standards, where individual facilities are required to meet an emissions performance standard;
· Energy efficiency targets, either regulatory or voluntary; and
· Voluntary performance goals, in which participating companies commit to achieving a particular emissions benchmark by a particular year.
Against this background, the North American greenhouse gas (GHG) regulatory landscape has recently been evolving at both federal and sub-national levels, putting GHG emissions benchmarks up on the agenda of U.S. states and Canadian provinces committed to reducing their emissions. Beyond North America, other jurisdictions are also developing benchmarks as a means to reduce GHG emissions, particularly in the European Union as part of the revision of its emissions trading system (ETS) in preparation of Phase III.
· Explore approaches to developing industrial greenhouse gas emissions benchmarks that could inform either allowances allocation under a GHG cap and trade program or performance-based GHG (i.e. performance standards) regulations;
· Gain understanding of current approaches to industry benchmarking, including those being implemented in the EU, California and elsewhere;
· Examine international best practices to identify appropriate sectors with which to begin benchmarking and how to design benchmarks;
· Identify benefits of coordinating benchmarking approaches, inter alia with regard to competitiveness and leakage issues;
· Generally foster broader communication and collaboration on climate policy by the example of benchmarking; and
· Identify possible next steps for continued collaboration between NA2050 and ICAP.
1 day public workshop in New York City with presentations and participation from ICAP and NA2050 representatives and from selected experts from various backgrounds (academia, non-profit, industry). Presentations will be followed by open discussions amongst the participants. About 60 attendees are expected.
· Representatives from ICAP members and observers engaged in and/or interested in developing benchmarks for allocation in an emissions trading system;
· Government officials from U.S. States and Canadian provinces, e.g. from RGGI, WCI and NA2050 jurisdictions, as well as from the U.S. and Canadian federal governments;
· Industry representatives e.g. from the refinery, steel, cement, pulp and paper sectors;
· Representatives from the non-governmental sector and from academia.
Co-hosts: International Carbon Action Partnership (ICAP) and the North America 2050 Initiative (NA2050)
(Presentations linked where available)
Welcome and introductions
Objective: Welcome speakers and participants. Outline objectives for the workshop. Provide overview of the agenda.
· Jared Snyder, N.Y.S. Department of Environmental Conservation and ICAP Co-Chair
· Stuart Clark and Craig Golding, NA2050 Industry Working Group Co-Chairs
Session 1: The Context/Rationale for Benchmarking
Chair: Hans Bergman, European Commission
Objective: Provide a theoretical introduction by defining the concept, key elements and rationale of benchmarking in current regulatory contexts in North America, Europe and elsewhere.
Session 2: Existing and Innovative Approaches to Benchmarking Policy around the World
Chair: Dirk Weinreich, German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety
Objective: Provide an overview of current approaches to benchmarking around the world with a focus on policymaking, while exploring similarities and differences while exploring similarities and differences among existing programs. Present the general approach to elaborating benchmarks. Discuss reasoning behind decision to utilize benchmarking and compare to alternatives. This session will also touch on potential uses of benchmarking not yet put in practice.
Session 3: Constructing Benchmarks
Objective: Focus on the technical aspects of benchmark construction and implementation in selected industry sectors. Highlight similarities and differences among existing programs and industry sectors and why these differences exist.
Session 4: Implementation Challenges and Lessons Learned
Chair: Justin Johnson, Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation
Objective: Reflect on the challenges encountered in the implementation of benchmarks and on lessons learned, both from a regulator’s and industry’s perspective. Discuss the benefits arising from benchmarking programs, and how industries have changed their practices.
· Jasmin Ansar, Union of Concerned Scientists
· Denise Viola, Shell
· Michelle Ward, New Zealand’s Environmental Protection Agency (via webcast)
Session 5: Conclusions and Outlook
Objective: Lessons learned from international experiences on benchmarking application in various policy contexts, sectors and countries. Review how challenges were overcome and if those solutions are applicable in all jurisdictions.
Exchange views and discuss possible features that allow for comparable benchmarks at international scale, and appropriate sectors with which to begin benchmarking. Discuss the replicability / transferability potential of examples presented during the workshop to other policy areas, approaches and sectors.
Open discussion facilitated by session chair