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January 23, 2017

Climate Friendly Materials Platform

2nd Workshop on Policy Design for a Climate-Friendly Materials Sector


January 23, 2017


DIW Berlin im Quartier 110
Mohrenstraße 58
10117 Berlin


Andrzej Blachowicz, Tobias Fleiter, John Barrett, Christopher Beauman, Robert Kok, John Barrett, Henry Derwent, Heleen de Coninck, Tomas Wyns, Heleen de Coninck, Roland Ismer, Manuel Haussner, Karsten Neuhoff, Jörn C. Richstein, Vera Zipperer

Materials are central to our economies – but their production also dominates industrial greenhouse gas emissions. It is therefore not possible for Europe to reach an 80-95% emission reduction target without significant emission reductions from the materials sector. While some production efficiency improvements and fuel shifting to lower carbon inputs have been achieved in sectors such as steel and cement, they amount to only modest reductions and their full potential is limited. The large, and necessary, mitigation potential linked to break-through process technologies, new materials, and more efficient material use remains largely untapped. The discrepancy between the policy objective of near complete decarbonization of the economy and only incremental developments in the sector creates uncertainty, thus inhibiting investments and innovation.


With this project we aim to explore what elements need to be put in place at the European and Member State level to allow for large scale emission reductions from material production through developing a portfolio of innovative processes and materials and providing incentives for their efficient use.

Within this guiding question, we plan to address the following three themes:
(a)  portfolio of mitigation opportunities;
regulatory framework and private sector choices on adoption of new technology;
structure of public innovation support.

Based on the insights from the three themes, the project then aims to provide a set of consistent technology and policy perspectives.

In the first workshop we explored and identified the relevant issues under each of the three themes, and we came up with a preliminary set of relevant research questions.

The aim of this second workshop is to present the scope of analysis, initial approaches and methods, and hypotheses we aim to test for discussion with the group of fellow researchers and selected stakeholders with the objective of gather early feedback, and identify opportunities for mutual support in the analysis.


Opening comments: Karsten Neuhoff (DIW Berlin)

Session 1: Portfolio of mitigation opportunities 

 Chair : Andrzej Blachowicz (Climate Strategies)

In this session, we will explore options of product innovations, process innovations, and more efficient use of materials for the major materials (cement, steel, aluminium and chemicals).

Presentation: Tobias Fleiter (Fraunhofer ISI)

Defining a common ground for assessments (PDF, 207.93 KB)

Presentation: John Barrett (University of Leeds)

Material Efficiency Strategies – Potential to reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions (PDF, 0.71 MB)

Session 2: Regulatory framework and private sector choices on adoption of new technology

Chair: Christopher Beauman (EBRD)

In this session, we will discuss policy frameworks that can support the adoption of new technologies in a world of (regulatory) uncertainty once they have reached maturity. In the discussion policy options, such as public procurement, project based carbon price guarantees, and mechanisms to ensure effective carbon pricing like inclusion of consumption, but also new business models for financing shall be explored as well as evaluated.

Presentation: Robert Kok (Radboud University)

Enabling environment for technology adoption (PDF, 335.32 KB)

Jörn Richstein (DIW Berlin)

Project-based carbon contracts (PDF, 182.28 KB)

Presentation: John Barrett (University of Leeds)

Regulatory approach to reducing emissions of carbon intensive materials
(PDF, 1.03 MB)
Presentation: Karsten Neuhoff (DIW Berlin)

Inclusion of Consumption in Emission Trading (PDF, 392.06 KB)

Session 3: Structure of public innovation support

Chair: Henry Derwent (Climate Strategies)

In this session, the speakers will present policy options supporting climate friendly materials innovation, as well as challenges for their success (e.g. ensuring technology competition, time inconsistency of carbon regulation, avoiding regulatory capture).

Presentation: Heleen de Coninck (Radboud University)

What timing and depth of emission reductions imply for innovation support policy in the materials sector (PDF, 393.54 KB)

Presentation: Tomas Wyns (Institute for European Studies VUB)

A low-carbon future for EU industry ‘fostering corporate co-benefits and innovative business models’ (PDF, 4.88 MB)

Presentation: Roland Ismer / Manuel Haussner (University of Erlangen Nürnberg)

Public Innovation Support. Coordination and Legal Requirements (PDF, 232.69 KB)

Presentation: Vera Zipperer (DIW Berlin)

Emission benchmarks revisited –how to fully restore economic incentives in emission trading (PDF, 0.58 MB)

Session 4: Integrating perspective and next steps

Chair: Heleen de Coninck (Radboud University)

This final session will aim to combine the main points emerging in the 3 previous sessions into a consistent picture. In particular we will discuss the two following themes:

  • Interaction of price based and other instruments for innovation and adoption of new materials and their efficient use.
  • Instruments on innovation versus adoption of technologies