OECD/IEA Climate Change Expert Group Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected papers on climate change issues that have been prepared for the OECD/IEA Climate Change Expert Group (CCXG). The CCXG (formerly called the Annex I Expert Group) is a group of government delegates from OECD and other industrialised countries. The aim of the group is to promote dialogue and enhance understanding on technical issues in the international climate change negotiations. CCXG papers are developed in consultation with experts from a wide range of developed and developing countries, including those participating in CCXG Global Forums.

The full papers are generally available only in English.

The opinions expressed in these papers are the sole responsibility of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the OECD, the IEA or their member countries, or the endorsement of any approach described therein.


Built to Last

Designing a Flexible and Durable 2015 Climate Change Agreement

The aim of this paper is to explore what a flexible and durable 2015 climate change agreement could look like and propose pragmatic options for the design of such an agreement. A durable 2015 climate change agreement would continue to be ambitious, fair and effective in 2020 and beyond. An agreement that is designed to be durable could also help to encourage widespread participation by governments, as well as improve the credibility of the agreement for investors. To achieve these objectives, a degree of flexibility could be included in the mitigation and other provisions of the 2015 agreement. If so, a balance may need to be struck between (i) providing enough flexibility for countries to feel comfortable participating in the agreement, (ii) providing predictability regarding the provisions of the agreement and the actions that governments intend to take, and (iii) the collective level of ambition of the agreement. Success will be needed on all fronts if the agreement is to be durable. Building some flexibility into the design of the 2015 agreement could make it more durable in the face of new scientific discoveries, external changes and shocks, as well as evolving country circumstances. The focus of this paper is on the mitigation part of the 2015 agreement. The paper outlines possible processes for consultations and updating of mitigation contributions. It also discusses the possible structure of the 2015 agreement and the implications of different mitigation contribution types for the flexibility and durability of the agreement.


Keywords: mitigation, greenhouse gas, climate change, 2015 agreement, UNFCCC
JEL: Q54: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Climate; Natural Disasters and Their Management; Global Warming; F53: International Economics / International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy / International Agreements and Observance; International Organizations; Q56: Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics / Environmental Economics / Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth; O44: Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth / Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity / Environment and Growth
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