March 12, 2008
Global Climate Change and Carbon Finance:
A Primer for Lawyers
Cosponsored by the DC Bar, Environment, Energy and Natural Resources Section/International Committee, and the International Law Section/Public International and Criminal Law Section
Carbon finance and trading of emissions allowances and credits are part of a burgeoning field that is helping to transform environmental law and policy around the world. Due in large part to the development of market mechanisms under the Kyoto Protocol, allowance and credit trading programs have been established at the international level, in Europe and other countries. In the United States, Congress is now focusing on the development of a national cap and trade system that would create a vast new market for allowances and credits. Meanwhile, Northeast and Western states have taken the lead in developing trading mechanisms as a way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that will directly impact the development of any national program. At the same time, a growing voluntary market in carbon credits has arisen in the United States as companies and other institutions seek to neutralize their carbon footprint, secure value for their energy investments, or simply prepare for an expected U.S. national trading system. Carbon finance has thus become a critical and continually evolving part of project development, commodities trading and overall corporate counseling practices.
The D.C. Bar hosted a lunch-time brown-bag program to introduce practitioners to some of the most exciting developments in carbon finance, including (1) the status of international rules and programs under the Kyoto Protocol, (2) the linking of forest protection efforts to credit-based trading, (3) how the European Trading System has worked and influenced the development of domestic programs, (4) efforts to ensure the integrity of credits, and (5) how national trading programs might work and interact with regional and international systems. Panelists included some of the leading experts in these areas who explained how the trading systems work, how deals are structured and risks evaluated, what developments can be expected in the future, and what role practitioners can play.
David Hunter, Director, U.S. Policy, International Emissions Trading Association
Tauna Szymanski, Hunton & Williams, LLP
Thomas Duvall, Chief Counsel, Project Finance and Cofinancing, Legal Department, World Bank
Bruce Braine, Vice President for Strategic Policy Analysis, American Electric Power
Dirk Forrister, Managing Director, Advisory and Research Services, Natsource
Duncan Marsh, Director of International Climate Policy, The Nature Conservancy
Bruce Braine PowerPoint
Thomas Duvall PowerPoint
Dirk Forrister PowerPoint
Tauna Szymanski PowerPoint
Please click here for more information on the
Understanding Climate Change Law seminar series.