International Technology Transfer for Climate Policy

David C. Popp, Syracuse University

Policy brief no. 39


This policy brief reviews the economic literature on environmental technology transfer. It then discuss the implications of this literature for climate policy, focusing on the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) of the Kyoto Protocol. It concludes by asking whether the current structure of the CDM provides sufficient incentives for technology transfer. Are CDM projects providing real emissions reductions, or are developed countries simply receiving credit for reductions that developing countries could have achieved on their own? What lessons can we learn from recent experience that may guide the development of the CDM (or other similar policy tools) during the next round of international climate policy negotiations?