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What is CDM?

Introduction: Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol defines Clean Development Mechanism (CDM);

‘The purpose of the clean development mechanism shall be to assist Parties not included in Annex I in achieving sustainable development and in contributing to the ultimate objective of the Convention, and to assist Parties included in Annex I in achieving compliance with their quantified emission limitation and reduction commitments under Article 3’

Background: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concluded that rapidly increasing green house gas concentration raising atmospheric temperature significantly. IPCC further demonstrated that, if the actions were not taken to limit these emissions, considerable changes would occur till the end of this century such as additional warming of the planet, changing climatic patterns, increasing natural disasters like floods, epidemic diseases, etc. Growing concern about the climate change among world leaders resulted in an international treaty-United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Kyoto protocol is an international agreement connected to the UNFCCC featured with legally bindingtargetsfor 37 industrialized countries to reduce and limit their GHG emissions by 5.2 % below of their emissions on 1990 level.  KP was adopted in 1997 and till date there are 193 countries committed to limit their greenhouse gas emissions by working together.

Reducing emissions within their own boundaries is costlier for Annex 1 countries as compared to doing the same  in Non annex 1 country. CDM allows a developed country (Country which is included in Annex 1 of the protocol) with emission-reduction targets to implement an emission reduction/sink project in developing countries (Non-annex 1 country).  These projects resulted into quantified emission reductions and can claim for Certified Emission Reductions (CERs). Each CER is equivalent to one tonne of CO2 and can be traded into International Market.

Following schematic explains how it works out;

Find out how many CDM projects are registered across the world


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