The Role and Functions of the Supervisory Body

JIKO Policy Paper 06/2018: Article 6.4 of the Paris Agreement

  • News 10.01.2019

Article 6.4 of the Paris Agreement created a new mechanism for Parties to cooperate in achieving their climate protection contributions. The operation of the new mechanism is to be supervised by a supervisory body appointed by the Conference of the Parties serving as meeting of the Parties to the Paris Agreement (CMA). However, it is still unclear exactly what role this body should play.

Against this background, Wolfgang Obergassel, Project Co-ordinator in the Energy, Transport and Climate Policy Division at the Wuppertal Institute, has analysed various governance options for Article 6.4 in the new JIKO Policy Paper "Governing Paris Article 6.4 – What Roles and Functions for the Article 6.4 Supervisory Body?".
The paper first discusses the objectives of the new mechanism and shows what role Article 6.4 should play as a whole. The paper then summarises what has already been agreed on the functioning of the mechanism and elaborates what further steps are needed to achieve internationally transferable emission reductions under Article 6.4. On this basis, the paper develops criteria for defining the role of the supervisory body. The roles assigned to the Board can vary widely:

  • It could merely be a notary, with the operation of the mechanism being left to Parties.
  • It could be a supervisor of the Parties' operations.
  • It could act as guardian, undertaking the operation of the mechanism itself.
  • Or it could be a promoter, not just operating the mechanism but taking active action to shape use of the mechanism by Party and non-Party actors.

Furthermore, the paper discusses the role that the Body and the other actors involved in the mechanism could play in each step of the activity cycle. "Finally, whatever role is chosen, the history of the Kyoto mechanisms shows that a regular review of the functioning of the new mechanism will be crucial to ensure its contribution to the Paris objectives," says Wolfgang Obergassel. In addition to the regular reflections by the Body and the CMA, the implementation of the Article 6.4 mechanism could also be examined in the context of the global stocktaking exercise which is to evaluate the implementation of the Paris Agreement every five years.

The JIKO Policy Paper 06/2018 "Governing Paris Article 6.4" can be downloaded free of charge under the link below.