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GHG

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A new WRI working paper finds that reducing flooding in rice paddies can dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and can also help conserve water and boost yields.

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What do Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States have in common? They are among the few countries that are linking their national greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions data with GHG data from individual industrial facilities.

Inventories are a fundamental tool for countries and facilities to measure and manage their GHG emissions. Establishing these linkages and sharing data between different inventory systems will continue to be critical in improving the quality of inventories, increasing their usefulness, reducing emissions at both the national and facility level, and enhancing their value for decision makers.

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Although there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution to developing a sustainable national GHG inventory system, countries can learn from each other’s experiences: What’s worked and why? What hasn’t worked and why? And how have countries built their capabilities for compiling a national inventory over time?

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Like other countries with emerging economies, India faces the dual challenge of reconciling its rapid economic growth with a pressing need to address climate change. In response, it has enhanced its international and domestic efforts to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.

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The India Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Program, launched in July 2013, aims to offer a meaningful starting place by providing a standardized method for companies to measure and manage their greenhouse gas emissions. Conceived in partnership with WRI, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), and the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the program provides Indian businesses with tools and technical assistance to measure their emissions, identify reduction opportunities, establish short and long-term reduction goals, and track their progress based on the GHG Protocol, the most widely used emissions accounting and reporting standard in the world.

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As countries negotiate a new international climate agreement for the post-2020 period—including at this week’s intersessional meeting in Bonn, Germany—the key choices for putting the world on a secure pathway to a low-carbon future should be front-of-mind. The new agreement will be essential for putting in place the policies beyond 2020 that ensure a shift from high-carbon to low-carbon and climate-resilient investments. To do this, the agreement will have to send the right signals to governments and businesses about the trajectory we need to be on.

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The UNFCCC meetings in Bonn this week mark a critical time, as one of the issues negotiators are focusing on is the development of countries’ post-2020 plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Parties in a position to do so must communicate their post-2020 “contributions” by the first quarter of 2015. To help inform this discussion, we published a working paper outlining what this information should look like and why this level of transparency is important.

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