September 2016 – With the adoption of the Paris Agreement in December 2015, the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) also agreed on new forms of using market mechanisms at the international level: Article 6.2 of the Paris Agreement allows Parties to transfer internationally transferred mitigation outcomes (ITMOS) by using bi- or multilateral forms of cooperation (so called cooperative approaches), while Article 6.4 establishes a mechanism governed by the UNFCCC that is to contribute to the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and support sustainable development (by many called Sustainable Development Mechanism - SDM). Both approaches allow for the transfer of mitigation outcomes that can be used for achieving the individual climate change mitigation goals of Parties under the Paris Agreement, the so called nationally determined contributions (NDCs).
Against this backdrop, a new JIKO Policy Paper analyses the risks to environmental integrity associated to the transfers of mitigation outcomes in the context of the Art. 6 mechanisms and provides an overview on approaches and tools that could be used for addressing them. The analysis shows that some of the environmental integrity risks can be dealt with at the technical level Others will be difficult to address without sacrificing at least parts of the new and open structure of the Paris Agreement.