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Policies for low carbon growth

The paper presents a review of low carbon growth policies in two high-income (UK and Germany), five middle-income (China, India, Mexico, Guyana and Nigeria) and two low-income countries (Bangladesh and Ethiopia). The challenge of policies across countries is structured in six main components: finance for mitigation and adaptation; human capital; technological progress in energy, infrastructure and transportation; investment in agriculture and forestry; trade and private investment opportunities; and incentives and regulation for low carbon growth.

Based on the six main components, the report gives the following policy recommendations:

Finance for mitigation and adaptation

  1. An international agreement on emissions reductions is a priority to help unlock private finance for mitigation.
  2. Countries should be strategic in how they position themselves to attract finance for mitigation and adaptation
  3. Developing countries need to continue to lobby for financial support for mitigation and adaptation, and for reform that will help them benefit more from carbon markets

Human Capital

  1. Raising awareness may help increase public understanding of climate change and its effects, and the implications for people’s livelihoods and welfare going forward.
  2. Training in skills relating to green technologies and industries can help position countries to take advantage of any new low carbon growth opportunities and markets.
  3. Targeted investments in health, water and sanitation may help increase climate resilience by protecting human capital from the potential negative health impacts of climate change.
  4. Infrastructure improvements and the development of clean energy options should be made as soon as possible to reduce emissions as well as adapt to potential impacts
  5. It is critical for low-income countries to receive international support and technology transfer to facilitate their transition to a low carbon economy.

Investment in agriculture and forestry

  1. Comprehensive approaches that include improved agronomic practices; climate-resistant crop varieties; water, soil and fertilizer management, and better livestock management are needed.
  2. Forestry payments present a significant potential financing opportunity for some countries, if international mechanisms such as REDD can be successfully developed.

Incentives and regulation for low carbon growth

  1. Internationally coordinated action to mitigate climate change can help reduce the risk of a ‘race to the bottom’ in relation to the taxation and regulation needed to stimulate low carbon growth.