Past Conference

Development Aspects of Climate Change Policies of OECD Countries

May 5, 2009

About the Event

Development Aspects of Climate Change Policies of OECD Countries
May 5, 2009

Co-Sponsored by: International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and the Environment and Trade in a World of Interdependence (ENTWINED) Program
Hosted by: Resources for the Future





OECD countries are in the process of legislating responses to the challenges posed by climate change. The prospect of rising carbon prices raises concerns in these nations of the impacts on the competitiveness of their own energy intensive industries and the potential for carbon leakage, particularly to emerging economies that lack comparable regulation. As a response, OECD countries are considering incorporating trade-related measures into their climate policies.  Some of these have been perceived as potentially harming industries in developing countries while arguably achieving limited results in mitigating total global carbon emissions. Others have been more acute in stating that these trade policy measures are more inclined to protect the competitiveness of domestic industries in OECD countries and, as such, partake the nature of disguised restrictions to trade.

With the assumption into office of the Obama Administration and its renewed prioritization of climate change issues, the United States Congress has ratcheted up deliberations on various bills, such as the Boxer-Lieberman-Warner Climate Security Act (S. 3036) and the Waxman-Markey American Clean Energy and Security Act (draft text). Regulations at the sub-federal or state level are likewise increasingly relevant vis-à-vis federal policies. In the European Union, member economies are preparing the next phase of the 'Emissions Trading System' and considering options in the absence of a major international agreement to cap greenhouse gas emissions. Japan, Australia and Canada are also deep into consideration of analogous measures.

Despite the obvious ramifications on their countries' trade competitiveness and sustainable development aspirations, many developing country trade policy-makers and negotiators remain at the fringe of the climate change debate. An enhanced level of understanding of the different approaches evolving among the key OECD countries is crucial if the various stakeholders are to have an enlightened dialogue on the development implications of OECD countries' domestic policies to address climate change.

In an effort to bridge the different spheres of knowledge and provide opportunity for an exchange of perspectives, particularly among those who are not often included in similar consultative processes, the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and the Environment and Trade in a World of Interdependence (ENTWINED) Program have organized a dialogue among select representatives from developing country trade and/or economic ministries, think-tanks and universities, Geneva-based developing country ambassadors and OECD member country government representatives. The activity was hosted by Resources for the Future (RFF) in Washington DC on May 5, 2009.

Thru this initiative, ICTSD and ENTWINED hope to:

(i) explore the development aspects of selected OECD countries’ domestic trade policies intended to address climate change, and

(ii) provide a platform for interaction and exchange amongst trade negotiators/policy-makers, private sector representatives, academia and civil society from both OECD as well as developing countries.


Morning Agenda


09:00 – 09:15 Opening remarks
Welcome by Phil SHARP, President, RFF
Introduction and Objectives Setting by ICTSD and ENTWINED
09:15– 9:30

Setting the context:
Steve CHARNOVITZ, George Washington University

9:30 - 12:30

Selected developed country trade policies to address climate change
Off-the-record presentations by representatives from selected OECD countries of their respective policies on these issues, with comments from developing country representatives

Moderator: Ricardo MELENDEZ-ORTIZ, ICTSD

A.   Tariffs, Import charges, Export rebate of emission allowance, Trade

  • Jason E. BORDOFF, Associate Director for Climate Change, WHITE HOUSE
  • Ms Ditte JUUL-JOERGENSEN, Head of Unit, Directorate General for Trade, EUROPEAN COMMISSION
  • Thomas GILLMORE, Senior Policy Advisor, Trade and Environment,
  • Cathy RAPER, Assistant Secretary, Trade Commitments Branch, Office of


  • Dr. Debapriya BHATTACHARYA, Former Bangaldesh Amb to WTO
  • H.E. Amb. Mario MATUS, Chile
  • H.E. Amb. Hisham M. BADR, Egypt
  • Georges LANDAU, Prismax Consulting, Sao Paulo and Editor, Brazil Focus

B.   Internal carbon pricing, Allowance allocation, Subsidies to affected
industries, Transport emission charges

  • Dallas BURTRAW, Senior Fellow, RFF


  • H.E. Amb. Guillermo VALLES GALMES, Uruguay
  • H.E. Amb. Carlos MBAYE, Senegal
  • H.E. Amb. Fernando de MATEO, Mexico
  • Paulo SOTERO, Director, Brazil Institute, Woodrow Wilson Center
12:30 - 13:45 Lunch Break


Afternoon Agenda

13:45 – 14:45

Trade and development impacts of policies to combat emissions

Interactive Panel

Comparing policies to combat carbon emissions leakage

The Effects of border adjustment policies on developing countries
Knut-Einar ROSENDAHL, Statistics Norway and RFF

OECD domestic policies and their impact on UNFCCC negotiations
Jennifer HAVERKAMP, Environmental Defense Fund

Trade ministers debates in the context of UNFCCC
Sjamsu RAHARDJA, World Bank Group / Ministry of Trade of Indonesia

Development and the climate change challenge: What can WTO contribute?
Peter GOVINDASAMY, Ministry of Trade and Industry of Singapore

14:45 – 15:45

Bio-fuels sector policies: trade and development implications
Interactive Panel

U.S. bio-fuels strategies at the federal and state Levels
Doug NEWMAN, U.S. International Trade Commission

On EU biofuels policy and trade: Tariffs, standards or import subsidies?
Mads GREAKER, Statistics Norway and ENTWINED

Bio-fuels, land use, and poverty
Farzad TAHERIPOUR, Purdue University

The developing country experience with bio-fuels

Bioenergy, trade, and development in Africa
Moustapha Kamal GUEYE, Senior Associate, ICTSD

15:45 – 16:00 Coffee Break
16:00 – 17:30

Climate-related standards and labels:

A.   Carbon standards and labels
Interactive Panel

The logic of climate change governance: Boundaries and leakage

The GHG Protocol Product and Supply ChainInitiative
Cynthia CUMMIS, World Resources Institute

China’s approach
LIU Yingling, China Program Manager, Worldwatch Institute

B.   Energy-efficiency standards and labels
Interactive Panel

Standards on energy efficiency and sustainability, climate change relevance and
trade policy aspects

Chris Nelson, Underwriters Laboratories

The ENERGY STAR Label: Advancing the market for energy efficient products
Ann Bailey, U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR Program

Energy efficiency standards, codes, and programs as a way to limit or reverse
the effect of capping greenhouse gases on energy prices

David Goldstein, Natural Resources Defense Council

About the Organizers


The Environment and Trade in a World of Interdependence (ENTWINED) program examines the interplay between the global trade regime and environmental policies promulgated by governments and private entities as well, with a particular focus on the treatment of trans-boundary problems.  Taking both a positive and a normative point of view, the program aims first to identify when these regimes act in concert or at cross purposes and second to suggest alternatives to allow for simultaneous achievement of environmental and trade objectives.

The ENTWINED program is funded by the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research, Mistra, which seeks to promote sustainable development by investing in collaboration between researchers and practitioners – with the aim of solving important environmental problems.

More information on ENTWINED and Mistra is available online at 

The International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) was established in Geneva in September 1996 to contribute to a better understanding of development and environment concerns in the context of international trade.  As an independent non-profit and non-governmental organisation, accredited by the United Nations, ICTSD engages a broad range of actors in ongoing dialogue about trade and sustainable development. With a wide network of governmental, non-governmental and inter-governmental partners, ICTSD plays a unique systemic role as a provider of original, non-partisan reporting and facilitation services at the intersection of international trade and sustainable development.

This Washington dialogue is conducted under ICTSD’s Global Platform on Climate Change, Trade Policies and Sustainable En


  • Dallas Burtraw, Darius Gaskins Senior Fellow, Resources for the Future
  • Carolyn Fischer, Senior Fellow
  • Mark A. Cohen, University Fellow, Resources for the Future; Professor of Management and Law, Vanderbilt University