Enel Foundation and the Harvard Project on Climate Agreements host discussion at COP-26 on study about international cooperation under the Paris agreement

  • The study, authored by MIT Professor Michael A. Mehling, explores issues and options for advancing international cooperation under Paris Agreement’s Article 6 and explores possible outcomes from the ongoing Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP-26) in Glasgow


Rome-Glasgow, November 10th, 2021Enel Foundation, together with the Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, and the Foundation Environment - Law Society (FURG), will host today the “Securing Climate Ambition with Cooperative Approaches: Options under Article 6” event in Glasgow, Scotland, at the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP-26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The event focuses on a new study, “Advancing International Cooperation under the Paris Agreement: Issues and Options for Article 6”, authored by Professor Michael A. Mehling, Deputy Director at the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, with the scientific contribution of Enel Foundation, which was recently published by the Harvard Project on Climate Agreements.

Nicolò Sartori, Senior Researcher Enel Foundation, said: “Beyond technicalities, by fully implementing Art. 6 - the missing piece of the Paris Agreement rulebook we can facilitate increasing ambition and mobilize investments through cooperation and market mechanisms. This paper clarifies the issues at stake and the space for compromise, hopefully helping the parties reach an agreement in the remaining days of COP26 in Glasgow.”

The paper analyzes the main issues and options of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, and explores possible outcomes from the ongoing COP-26 in Glasgow. Article 6 provides opportunities of international cooperation for national governments and the private sector as they implement their nationally determined contributions (NDCs) to address climate change. In particular, Article 6 sets out three main paths, including: cooperative approaches through the use of internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOs); a new crediting mechanism, sometimes referred to as the “Sustainable Development Mechanism”; and a framework for non-market approaches.

According to Mehling’s study, international cooperation under Article 6 is key to promote stronger mitigation actions and progress on the next NDC cycle in order to achieve the Paris Agreement’s temperature stabilization targets. However, Mehling argues that sufficient integrity needs to be ensured to avoid creating a distorted incentive for future NDCs so as not to weaken ambition under the Paris Agreement. Furthermore, the paper highlights the importance of developing rules and guidance for implementation of Article 6 to overcome the “constructive ambiguity” of the article, which may lead to misinterpretations and conflicting viewpoints.

The panel discussion will feature the perspectives of Professor Mehling along with Daniele Agostini, Head of Energy and Climate Policies at Enel; Kelley Kizzier, Vice President for Global Climate, Environmental Defense Fund; and Robert Stavins, Director, Harvard Project on Climate Agreements.

Enel Foundation is a non-profit organization focusing on the crucial role of clean energy to ensure a sustainable future for all. By developing partnerships with pre-eminent experts and institutions across the globe, leveraging on the vast knowledge of its founders, Enel Foundation conducts research to explore the implications of global challenges in the energy domain and offers education programs to the benefit of talents in the scientific, business and institutional realms.

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Enel Harvard Study

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