Carbon Pricing – a “must have” for WBCSD’s Vision 2050

In the past few months I have written quite a bit about carbon pricing, both from the perspective of regions that already have it and are debating its future and regions that don’t but are considering implementation – in some cases in the midst of a political firestorm over the issue.  This leads me to the newest publication by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), Carbon Pricing – The role of a carbon price as a climate change policy instrument. This isn’t a deep 50+ pager, but a short overview of the issue, explaining how it works and why it’s needed, how it can be implemented and some of the ways it interacts with the economy. 

In 2010 the World Business Council for Sustainable Development released its Vision 2050 report. The Vision 2050 study lays out a pathway leading to a global population of some 9 billion people living well, within the resource limits of the planet by 2050. The report was released at the 2010 World CEO Forum in New Delhi, India. Vision 2050.

Vision 2050 identifies a number of elements on its critical pathway, foremost of which is “Incorporating the cost of externalities, starting with carbon . . . . . “. Vision 2050 has also been illustrated with a sweeping wall mural, which also includes the carbon price message.

The Carbon Pricing publication builds on this need and discusses ways in which a carbon price can be imposed on an economy. Although Vision 2050 is explicit in seeking “a network of linked emissions trading frameworks”, the publication explores both explicit and implicit ways of arriving at a carbon price in the economy. Several of these approaches were discussed in this blog back in November 2010.

The publication can be downloaded from WBCSD.