The European Roundtable on Climate Change and Sustainable Transition (ERCST) and the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions at Duke University are organising a virtual USA-EU “town hall meeting” on the role that Border Carbon Adjustments (BCAs) may play in addressing asymmetry in climate ambition under the Paris Agreement, with special focus on the plans that the European Union has to examine this option. This activity together with other similar planned “town hall” meetings will feed into a policy paper on the international views on BCA that ERCST will publish in collaboration with its partners.
The European Green Deal has strengthened the level of climate ambition, increasing the asymmetry of climate efforts by aiming to achieve climate neutrality in the European Union by 2050. This raises the question of how to deal with competitive pressure and carbon leakage, pushing BCAs to the front as a possible solution.
Border carbon adjustments (BCAs) aim to alleviate negative effects caused by uneven climate policies by including imports and/or exempting exports. BCAs seek to level the playing field in competitive markets, incentivize trade partners to strengthen their own climate efforts and prevent leakage of carbon emissions to jurisdictions with weaker policies. These objectives can be achieved by a tariff or other fiscal measure applied to imported goods, the extension of regulatory compliance obligations (e.g. ETS) to imports or a tax exemption or regulatory relief for exports.
This virtual town-hall is part of the ERCST project on border carbon adjustment, which is supported by Eurofer, Enel, FuelsEurope, the Government of France, the Government of Germany, HeidelbergCement, MetInvest, and Solvay.