Paris Agreement Rulebook Article 6

“It`s hard to imagine how countries will agree on the right options and the right accounting rules and methods, when we can`t even have an agreement to eliminate those that are clearly incompatible… I mean, it`s not even a climate atmosphere, in many cases it`s common sense. The last unresolved element of the Paris “Regulatory Framework” agreement, the Article 6 negotiations have symbolic significance for the general regime, which is expected to enter into force in early 2020. This highlights a reason for disagreement with Article 6.4, namely that cdM hosts did not have specific Kyoto emission reduction targets, meaning that economies cannot be “counted twice” towards more than one target. “It is frustrating that the section 6 regulatory framework has not been reached while it was at the centre of the conference. The list of unresolved issues transferred to COP26 is almost the same as for COP24 – and postpones by two years an agreement on critical rules for international carbon trading,” says Jeff Swartz, Director Climate Policy – Carbon Markets, South Pole. If the rules of Article 6 are to be adopted, a number of overlapping and contradictory national priorities – a veritable “four-dimensional spaghetti” of red lines – must be unleashed during the UN climate talks in Madrid in December or, if not, at COP26 in Glasgow in 2020. In addition to the conditions imposed in the context of the double counting of the text of the Paris Agreement itself, the parties also agreed to formulate additional formulations in paragraph 77, point d), of the Paris Regulation, which was signed at COP24 in December 2018 and presented below. The three separate mechanisms – in accordance with Articles 6.2, 6.4 and 6.8 – were all part of the Paris Agreement, in recognition of the competing interests and priorities between the contracting parties to the agreement. These differences remain and need to be reviewed if the section 6 regulatory framework is to be adopted. However, considerable progress has been made in Madrid on technical issues. It is also positive to note that, on the last day of the conference, a group of countries led by Costa Rica and Switzerland launched the “San José Declaration”, which established quality standards for the integrity of transactions in accordance with Article 6 and quickly received support from 31 countries. It remains to be seen whether the principles agreed in the declaration can mark negotiations on the Article 6 regulatory framework and help overcome the political differences that prevail in abundance.

The ongoing negotiations will be critical to the future role of market mechanisms and will also largely determine how the parties can cooperate in the implementation of their national contributions (CNN). These “Article 6” rules on carbon markets and other forms of international cooperation are the last piece of the Paris regime to be resolved after the rest of its “regulatory corpus” was adopted at the end of 2018. While draft negotiating texts for the other part of the regulation were gradually reduced during the two-week meeting, sections of Article 6 remained blocked, with 132 unresolved passages containing “hooks” shown in red in the table below. At the international climate summit in Madrid in December 2019, climate negotiators will once again attempt to finalize the Article 6 “regulatory framework” that will govern voluntary international cooperation on climate change issues, including carbon markets. In order to truly understand the task entrusted to them and the main areas of disagreement that remain, the first point of contact is the text of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement itself, presented in annotated form in the graph below.