Protectionism under a Green Label: Analysis in Light of the Waxman-Markey Climate Change Bill of 2009

This research article analyzes and evaluates the key provisions of the Waxman-Markey Climate Change Bill, which was introduced to establish an aggressive cap-and-trade programme aimed at promoting renewable energy, energy efficiency, and reducing global warming pollution. However, the bill became controversial and was opposed by various countries as the provisions of the bill are against rules of the WTO. Developing countries are viewing it as an attempt to extra-territorially enforce carbon emission standards on their products and production processes, even when the latter do not have the financial capacity nor technology to effectively adopt and comply with such standards. The bill was proposed while the entire world was facing a financial crisis and the protectionism measures in the bill may further deepen the crisis. The paper ends with the conclusion that the present bill is insufficient as to control of carbon emissions, given its nature, until 2026 and it creates a volatile carbon market dominated by short-term financial gain incentives.

I. Introduction
II. Controversial Provisions of the Bill
1. Cap-and-Trade and Emission Allowance
2. Offset Credit
3. Border Tax Adjustments
4. Domestic Competitiveness and Rebate
III. Rationale behind these provisions and Competitiveness Concerns
IV. Requirement for a Valid Legal Measure under the WTO
1. First Requirement
2. Second Requirement
3. Challenges to US Border Adjustment Measures
4. Article XX
5. Paragraph (b)
6. Paragraph (g)
7. The Chapeau
8. US Shrimp Case
9. Challenges to US Emission Allowance and Competitiveness Provisions
10. TBT Agreement
V. The Global Warming Bill Could Lead to a Green Trade War
1. Backdoor Protectionism
2. Unilateral Measures Would Not Induce the Developing Countries to Accept Emission Standards
3. Bill is Not a True Climate Protector
V. Conclusion



Copyright: © Lexxion Verlagsgesellschaft mbH
Quelle: Issue 1/2010 (April 2010)
Seiten: 11
Preis inkl. MwSt.: € 41,65
Autor: B.A., LLB (H) Vijay Bishnoi

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