Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Publications

 

November 14, 2013

Supplementing REDD+ with Biodiversity Payments: The Paradox of Paying for Multiple Ecosystem Services - Working Paper 347

An international mechanism to reduce emissions from deforestation using carbon payments (REDD+) can be leveraged to make payments for forests’ biodiversity as well. Paradoxically, under conditions consistent with emerging REDD+ programs, money spent on a mixture of carbon payments and biodiversity payments has the potential to incentivize the provision of greater climate benefits than an equal amount of money spent only on carbon payments.  
October 3, 2013

Making Large-Scale Wind and Solar Power a Reality

South Africa and many other countries hope to aggressively expand wind and solar power (WSP) in the coming decades. This presents significant challenges for power system planning. Success hinges largely on the question of how and where to deploy WSP technologies. Well-designed deployment strategies can take advantage of natural variability in resources across space and time to help minimize costs, maximize benefits, and ensure reliability.  
September 4, 2013

Planning for Large-Scale Wind and Solar Power in South Africa: Identifying Cost-Effective Deployment Strategies Using Spatiotemporal Modeling - Working Paper 340

South Africa and many other countries hope to aggressively expand wind and solar power (WSP) in coming decades. The challenge is to turn laudable aspirations into concrete plans that minimize costs, maximize benefits, and ensure reliability. Success hinges largely on the question of how and where to deploy intermittent WSP technologies. This study develops a 10-year database of expected hourly power generation for onshore wind, solar photovoltaic, and concentrating solar power technologies across South Africa. A simple power system model simulates the economic and environmental performance of different WSP spatial deployment strategies in 2040, while ensuring a minimum level of system reliability. 

July 18, 2013

First Steps toward a Quality of Climate Finance Scorecard (QUODA-CF) - Working Paper 335

Are climate finance contributor countries, multilateral aid  agencies and specialized funds using widely accepted best  practices in foreign assistance? How is it possible to measure and compare international climate finance contributions when there are as yet no established metrics or agreed  definitions of the quality of climate finance? As a subjective  metric, quality can mean different things to different stakeholders, while of donor countries, recipients and institutional  actors may place quality across a broad spectrum of objectives. 

Katherine Sierra , Timmons Roberts , Michele de Nevers , Claire Langley and Cory Smith
July 12, 2013

Thinking Through When the World Bank Should Fund Coal Projects

The World Bank should be ambitious in working toward clean energy approaches in its development strategies, but it would be a mistake to definitively rule out coal in all circumstances. Such a decision would be bad for development and would also undermine the very goals that the bank’s coal critics espouse by further pitting developing and developed countries against each other in the climate debate occurring within the bank. The key challenges are to identify the relevant development needs related to coal-fired generation, to define the role of the bank, and to elaborate guidelines to direct decisions. In this essay, we discuss the broad issues and then summarize what the guidelines likely would mean in practice.

January 24, 2013

Wanted: A Climate Agency for a Bottom-Up World—A Proposal for a New Arm of the World Bank

Climate negotiations have focused on reaching a top-down international agreement and on mobilizing a pool of financial resources. This brief explains the urgent need for a new entity to provide nonfinancial services to faciliate and augment climate action that any nations and private actors take. It explores one possible path for filling the gap: the creation of a new arm of the World Bank.