Anja Kollmuss

SEI Associate


Zurich, Switzerland
climate@anjakollmuss.com
skype: anja667
+41 (77) 485 3667

She works as an independent policy analyst and communications expert on climate mitigation policies at the global and EU level. For over 15 years, she has coordinated and researched projects at the intersection of energy, climate change and sustainable development. Prior to that she worked at SEI, researching cap-and-trade and carbon offset programs.

Anja did her undergraduate studies at the ETH in Switzerland and at Harvard in Biology and Environmental Studies. She holds an MA in Urban and Environmental Planning from Tufts University. In her spare time, she enjoys performing and improvising. She is based in Berlin, Germany, and Zurich, Switzerland.


Recent Publications by Anja Kollmuss

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Ensuring the environmental integrity of market mechanisms under the Paris Agreement

SEI policy brief

Author(s): Schneider, L. ; Kollmuss, A. ; La Hoz Theuer, S.
Year: 2016

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets

Description: Market mechanisms that enable the international transfer of greenhouse gas emission permits or emission reduction credits have been part of the international climate regime for two decades. They aim to reduce the cost of achieving mitigation goals by providing flexibility in how and where emissions are reduced. This policy brief identifies key issues and explores options for safeguarding the environmental integrity of market mechanisms under the Paris Agreement, drawing on lessons from mechanisms established under the Kyoto Protocol.
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Has Joint Implementation reduced GHG emissions? Lessons learned for the design of carbon market mechanisms

SEI Working Paper No. 2015-07

Author(s): Kollmuss, A. ; Schneider, L. ; Zhezherin, V.
Year: 2015

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets

Description: This study systematically evaluates the environmental integrity of Joint Implementation (JI) in the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol. The analysis indicates that about three-quarters of JI offsets are unlikely to represent additional emissions reductions. This suggests that the use of JI offsets may have enabled global GHG emissions to be about 600 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent higher than they would have been if countries had met their emissions domestically.
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Has Joint Implementation reduced GHG emissions? Lessons learned for the design of carbon market mechanisms (brief)

SEI policy brief

Author(s): Kollmuss, A. ; Schneider, L. ; Zhezherin, V.
Year: 2015

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets

Description: This policy brief summarizes a systematic evaluation of the environmental integrity of Joint Implementation in the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, 2008-2012. As of March 2015, almost 872 million Emission Reduction Units (ERUs) had been issued under JI. Host countries must cancel one of their emission allowances for every ERU issued, but more than 95% of ERUs were issued by countries with significant surpluses of allowances in the first commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol. Of the six largest project types, only one – N2O abatement from nitric acid production – had overall high environmental integrity; for the rest, additionality seems unlikely or questionable, or unrealistic assumptions were used that significantly overestimate emission reductions. Overall, 80% of ERUs issued came from project types with questionable or low environmental integrity.
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Perverse effects of carbon markets on HFC-23 and SF6 abatement projects in Russia

Nature Climate Change, online 24 August 2015

Author(s): Schneider, L. ; Kollmuss, A.
Year: 2015

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets

Description: This article examines how the ability to generate additional Joint Implementation credits may have affected waste gas generation at chemical plants in Russia. The environmental integrity of project-based mechanisms has been subject to controversial debate and extensive research, in particular for projects abating industrial waste gases with a high global warming potential. For such projects, revenues from credits can significantly exceed abatement costs, creating perverse incentives to increase production or waste gas generation, to increase credit revenues from waste gas abatement. Here the authors show that all projects abating HFC-23 and SF6 under the Kyoto Protocol's Joint Implementation mechanism in Russia increased waste gas generation to unprecedented levels, once they could generate credits from producing more waste gas.
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Addressing the Risk of Double Counting Emission Reductions under the UNFCCC

SEI Working Paper No. 2014-02

Author(s): Schneider, L. ; Kollmuss, A. ; Lazarus, M.
Year: 2014

Research Area(s): Emissions Trading & Offsets ; Climate Mitigation Policy

Description: Avoiding double counting of emission reductions is a key policy concern to Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This paper systematically assesses how double counting can occur and how it could be addressed. It finds that double counting can occur not only directly, but in rather indirect ways which can be challenging to identify. Addressing double counting effectively requires international coordination in three areas: accounting of units, design of mechanisms that issue units, and consistent tracking and reporting on units. The paper discusses different options and makes specific recommendations for rules to address double counting up to 2020 and in a post-2020 climate regime.
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