Blockchain, Double Counting, and the Paris Agreement

Essay by Henrique Schneider

The following downloadable essay explores possibilities and limitations of applying blockchain distributed ledger technology to select aspects of the Paris Agreement, especially to issues under Article 6 (and, where relevant, Articles 4, and 13). Through the application of blockchain, double counting (and similar concerns) can be mitigated while making reporting, tracking and managing corresponding adjustments efficient. Blockchain enables accounting for nationally determined contributions (NDCs) and increases the transparency in the implementation of the Paris Agreement. This, on the other hand, depends on a careful institutional set-up.

This essay lays out the requirements for a blockchain system (or a set of blockchain) under Article 6. At the same time, it considers the limitations of applying blockchain. These limitations arise due to the distributed ledger technology itself, but also due to the nature of international negotiations in connection with the Paris Agreement.

Keywords: Blockchain, Distributed Ledger Technology, Paris Agreement, Carbon Markets, Cooperative Approaches, Corresponding Adjustments, Double Counting.

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