A study into Decarbonisation and Carbon Offsetting in Hertfordshire

Project: Research

Project Details


A study analysing the LT-LEDS reports from Annex I countries and considering the decarbonisation strategies that balance emissions reductions with carbon offsetting. The results were localised using the Carbon reduction plans for Hertfordshire and institutional analysis. Focus was directed towards the nascent principles for carbon offsetting in Hertfordshire, and its potential evolution into insetting. The institutional structure for carbon insetting was analysed. The study used textual analysis and doctrinal legal research to arrive at its findings and recommendations.

Layman's description

The government's commitments to addressing climate change are difficult to scrutinise and assess. This research studies the rules and institutions created to address climate change and finds that inadequate powers for institutions and the lack of institutional mechanisms to address cross-institutional action across the private and public sectors may be one of the reasons for weak climate governance. The study provides recommendations on building local climate institutions, and makes a case for new powers for local authorities for faster reductions of CO2 emissions in the region.

Key findings

The report recommends that the Hertfordshire Climate Change and Sustainability Partnership adopt the following principles with respect to the countywide residual emissions projected till 2047
As a principle, the group has agreed that reduction of carbon emissions should be prioritised and pursued over offsetting.
a. Such offsetting should fall only within the geographical region of the county from 2027 onwards (also known as Insetting).
b. Residual emissions should not go beyond (5%) of total carbon budget of the county.
c. Insetting of residual emissions to be facilitated through the ‘Hertfordshire Residual Emissions Administration Office’ (HREAO)
d. Encourage users of insets to increase their portion of insets that come from carbon removal from the atmosphere rather than from emissions reduction.
e. Strive to take up long-term storage of carbon vis a vis options of short-term storage.
Effective start/end date15/04/2331/10/23


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