Domestic Offsetting; A local option - Liam Kinsella DAFF -EPA June 2010

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  • Non CO2 gases – CH4 and N20
  • Domestic Offsetting; A local option - Liam Kinsella DAFF -EPA June 2010

    1. 1. Domestic offsetting: A local Option Liam Kinsella Environment & Engineering Services Division
    2. 2. Outline • Basic Information • Domestic offsetting in agriculture and land use – Options – Opportunities – Approaches – Consideratons • Summary • Concluding remarks
    3. 3. Domestic offsetting • Creation of tradable units of GHG emissions reduction representing measured or estimated results of mitigation projects. • Article 24a(1) Dir 2009/29/EC “measures for issuing allowances…in respect of projects administered by MS that reduce GHG emissions not covered by the community scheme may be adopted” • Similar to international mechanisms: CDM or JI • Offsets achieved by financial support of projects to • Reduce emissions of GHG - efficiency • Increase sequestration
    4. 4. Sectors • Land Based – Land use Land Use Change and Forestry (ESD) • Future afforestation • Reduced losses of soil carbon, Soil C sequestration • Energy production • Agriculture – Direct technical interventions – By improving efficiency • Waste • Domestic – Community heating scheme • Transport
    5. 5. Potential Customers • Government – Avoid purchase of International Credits – Retain funds in Ireland – Promote preferred activities – • Afforestation • Technological innovation • ETS • Voluntary market – Improve C foot print of products or services – Individuals? – Other farmers?
    6. 6. Issues for Consideration in DO schemes • Additional Reductions or sequestration – Compared to what would occur with existing measures – Baseline is very important – Need to avoid unearned credits • Verification – Can the emissions reductions be verified – Inclusion in national Inventory • Double counting • Permenance • Cost effectiveness – Costs incurred in mitigation or sequestration action – Administrative costs – overhead • Scale of emissions reductions – cost per tonne
    7. 7. Offsets in agriculture/ land use sector • Agricultural projection - baseline – 12.5% decline compared to 1990 by 2020 – 10.7% decline compared to 2005 by 2020 • Agricultural mitigation – Improved efficiency – Technological interventions (~4% of projected emissions) • Carbon sequestration – Agricultural soils • ~ 3.9 m ha of grassland, ~0.4 m ha of tillage crops • But ag soils activities not reported – Forestry: requires new planting • Energy production – Reduce fossil fuel use mainly outside sector
    8. 8. Opportunity for the sector • Driver of Improved efficiency • Income opportunity for farmers • Driver for research and identification of: - New technologies for: • Mitigation • Emissions measurement - Development of methodologies • Wider economic impact - Domestic offsetting could represent a new market - Providing opportunities for entrepreneurs
    9. 9. Options for Domestic offsetting • Sequestration – Forestry • Good information available on sequestration capacity • Additional bio-energy benefits, • Long term storage of C in HWP – Agricultural soils • Flux measurements indicate sequestration • Calculation rules are important • Monitoring, Reporting and Verification • Research requirement to develop – Measurement technologies and methodologies – Management interventions • Agricultural mitigation – Most current strategies benificial to the farmer or low cost – Identification of additional strategies? • Research ongoing but more required
    10. 10. MRV issues • MRV is challenging – Large variability in emissions • Between systems – e.g. beef v dairy • Within systems –depending on: – Level of output, feed intake, diet, etc – Natural variability between animals and breeds – Soil type and climate and their interactions: management – Agricultural systems are natural systems • Uncertainty in emissions both methane and nitrous oxide • Impact of mitigation strategy uncertain • Internationally recognised issue – How can emissions changes be monitored and verified? – New Zealand experience – Ag Work Programme in UNFCCC. – Global Research Alliance on Agric GHG Emissions
    11. 11. Approaches in sector • Farm level domestic offset project – Could be mitigation or sequestration – Requires identification of baseline at farm level – Projects likely to be small • ~130,000 farmers, Average farm emissions: ~140 tonnes – MRV issues • Sectoral approach – Requires monitoring and verification • Therefore need farm level information • Uncertainty of impact – Reduces administrative costs – Actions required at farm level – Transfer incentive to farm level?
    12. 12. Environmental integrity • Can MRV be organised? – Soil C may be particularly difficult – More information required: both LULUCF and agricultural sector • How to prevent perverse actions? – To access payment in the future – Trade off within project? • Tools available • Carbon leakage – Increased emissions outside boundary • Project • Sector • National
    13. 13. Commercial issues • Irish Agric production is efficient • But continuous improvement required • C- footprint is a competitiveness indicator – Assume credits sold to different sector. – Impact on c-footprint of food produced? • Demand for credits from agric sector – Internal offsetting scheme? – Impact on individual expansion – sectoral rationlisation? – Impact on sector profitability – Competition with other buyers? – Capacity to meet growing food demand worldwide?
    14. 14. Summary • Opportunites exist to establish DO schemes – With particpation by Agricultural and Land use sectors – Maybe other sectors also • MRV might be difficult and expensive – Natural systems – Measurement technologies – In particular verification is difficult • Aim is to achieve cost effective emissions reductions – Of benefit to ag sector – Assist in meeting national targets? – Environmental integrity
    15. 15. Concluding remarks • DAFF analysis to date – Focused on mitigation • Options • Implications – Leadership role in this area • Future analysis – Climate change adaptation – Domestic offsetting • Domestic offsetting – Engagement with EPA project – Implications for sector – Can DO further improve contribution to mitigation Sector, national, international

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