Climate Change, Trade and Sustainable Energy: Post-2015 Development Agenda Briefing Series

Date period
24 June 2014

How best to address climate change has been an important part of the debate around a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) within the global Post-2015 Development Agenda. The ‘zero draft’ of SDGs and targets released on 2 June 2014 by the Co-Chairs of the United Nations General Assembly’s Open Working Group on SDGs reflected in several places attempts to balance the environmental imperative of reducing emissions with the human development imperative of increasing access to energy. The draft target on fossil fuel subsidy elimination, for example, referenced the need for solutions to ensure the poorest had access to affordable energy. This policy brief draws on ICTSD’s work in this area to explore ways in which trade can contribute effectively to efforts to address climate change, particularly the transition to a sustainable energy future.

The Open Working Group on Sustainable Development Goals was established by the United Nations General Assembly to provide recommendations for a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as part of the Post-2015 Development Agenda. ICTSD’s Post-2015 Development Agenda Briefing Series, based on submissions to the Open Working Group, summarises research on the role of trade in meeting sustainable development objectives, including addressing the challenges of climate change and sustainable fisheries, and through Aid for Trade.