We develop sustainable solutions in:

Climate Change

Mitigating and adapting to climate change: this is the single, most urgent challenge humanity is faced with today. International commitments set targets for average increases in global temperatures at 1.5oC, imposing drastic changes in the way our societies and economies function and develop. Standing up to this challenge requires the elaboration of holistic strategies, operating at the intersections of the different sectors of our economy. Trinomics has an enthusiastic team of experts to tackle such issues. Our work spans adaptation and resilience, climate finance, carbon pricing and markets, emission reduction pathways, as well as cross-cutting themes, embracing international agreements, questions of social justice and inclusion, sustainable governance and development.

The types of studies we undertake reflect this diversity, with service contracts involving, among others, impact assessments and evaluations, stakeholder engagement, indicator development and market analyses, merging quantitative and qualitative tools. Our work advises leading public and private clients, at national, European and international level. Trinomics’ Climate Change team works at the forefront of international climate policy, intersecting domains and methods to deliver policy advice for a climate-neutral future.

Climate finance

  • Addressing the current global needs on climate change mitigation and adaptation requires financial flows to be consistent with a 1.5-degree global warming pathway. Accordingly, the UNFCCC defines climate finance as “local, national or transnational financing that seeks to support mitigation and adaptation actions that will address climate change”. Therefore, the Paris Agreement established the goal of making “finance flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development”.
  • Despite the global momentum for aligning financial flows with the Paris Agreement, there is limited progress in overall climate finance flows consistent with the Paris Agreement. The 2019 OECD figures on Climate Finance showed that climate finance continued to grow, but also that developed countries remain USD 20 billion short of meeting the 2020 goal of mobilising USD 100 billion. Therefore, providing support to developing transparent mechanisms that enable the transfer and mobilisation of finance can enhance the feasibility of mitigation and adaptation options and achieve climate commitments.
  • At Trinomics, we have continuously worked to enhance transparency and support the mobilisation of international climate finance. Since 2016, we have supported the European Commission in the aggregation and assessment of the information reported by the EU Member States on climate finance provided to developing countries. Our team has identified shortcomings in the reporting and provided recommendations for improving the current framework. In the same vein, we have regularly supported national governments (such as the Government of the Netherlands) on developing climate finance reporting methodologies to measure private sector contributions. Recently, our team was also involved in the evaluation of international climate finance by the Belgian federal government. At the global level, we have worked to enhance access to international climate finance of a variety of developing countries including, among others, Barbados and St Vincent, El Salvador, Kenya, and Uganda.
See Climate Finance

For more information:

Tatiana Cuervo Blanco

Adaptation & resilience

  • As global emissions of greenhouse gases are still on the rise, earth’s climate continues to change. The associated increasing temperatures will bring all kinds of risks. From more frequent extreme weather events like floods, heatwaves, or drought, to coastal erosion from rising sea levels, the impacts will affect everyone across the globe. Therefore, societies need inevitably to adapt to become more climate resilient, with in particular the most vulnerable members of the population, such as the infants and elderly. Higher temperatures and more erratic precipitation patterns are also expected to cause a shift in the geographical distribution of climate zones. Which will have a significant impact on the distribution and abundance of many plant and animal species, which are already under pressure from pollution and habitat loss.
  • “Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get” (Mark Twain). It is these weather extremes which are the largest common denominator to which societies are used to adapt. However, the rate by which temperature, and climate is changing over the past decades is unprecedented. Therefore, societies are dependent on their adaptive capacity to become climate-resilient, which for many (developed, and developing) countries is very challenging. As such climate adaptation and disaster resilience are often connected with developing countries, and Trinomics supports clients from developing and developed countries alike with their policy and finance questions around pressing climate adaptation and resilience issues.
  • We assist governments and international organisations in particular with their economic and financial assessment of future adaptation needs and/or disaster risk and impacts. We have a garnered a well-rounded expertise in the area of climate adaptation, through our work evaluating the 2013 EU Adaptation Strategy, and by conducting the impact assessment on the new EU Adaptation Strategy. In these projects we have applied the EU Better Regulation Guidelines to assess the effectiveness, efficiency, relevance, coherence and EU added value of these interventions. This contributed to our knowledge base which has been generated through modelling the socio-economic impacts, and assessment of policy options to instigate and accelerate adaptation action throughout Europe. As such, we have a team of experts who have an in-depth knowledge of climate adaptation, their interactions, and their impacts.
See adaptation & resilience projects

For more information:

Maha Cziesielski

Carbon pricing

  • Carbon pricing is an essential instrument in the suite of policy measures necessary in meeting the ambitions of the Paris Agreement—to limit the global temperature rise to well below 2°C and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C compared to pre-industrial levels. By putting a price on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, emitters are financially incentivised to reduce their GHG emissions in a cost-effective manner. Simultaneously, carbon pricing can generate revenues to support vulnerable households or direct financial flows to low-carbon investments. The main forms of carbon pricing instruments include emissions trading systems (ETS), carbon taxes, carbon crediting mechanisms and results-based climate finance.
  • While carbon pricing is a powerful policy instrument for incentivising GHG emissions abatement, it can—if not well designed—lead to a loss of competitiveness and increase the cost of living. Companies could decide to relocate their production to jurisdictions with less stringent climate policies or production could shift to more polluting companies in those jurisdictions, resulting in a global rise in GHG emissions known as carbon leakage. Consumers could face higher bills for their energy use due to the additional cost of carbon, decreasing political support for more stringent climate policy. Particularly in the EU, these challenges will become more profound with climate neutrality by 2050 being enshrined into EU law and carbon pricing being a key pillar to reach this goal.
  • At Trinomics, we are actively shaping carbon pricing policies through our work for the European Commission and national governments. We have conducted numerous studies on policy measures to address the risk of carbon leakage such as free allocation and carbon border adjustment mechanisms. This includes assessing the risk of carbon leakage for industrial sectors under the EU ETS and determining the list of sectors eligible to receive additional free allowances for 2021-2030 for mitigating carbon leakage. Our other work to increase the effectiveness of the EU ETS further includes a review of the market stability reserve (MSR) and investigating the potential to extend the EU ETS to the maritime sector. In addition, we have supported the Dutch government in the design and implementation of the Dutch CO2 levy for industry. As such, we have a team of experts with in-depth knowledge on how to design and implement carbon pricing policies effectively.
See Carbon Pricing

For more information:

Long Lam
Senior Consultant

Emission reduction pathways

  • In a global response to climate change threats, the Paris Agreement has set out a global framework to reduce the risks of climate change by” Holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels” (Paris agreement, 2015). Accordingly, it is inevitable that countries must achieve climate neutrality by mid-century. In the agreement, countries are required to communicate their actions and plans to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions in the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) in order to reach the goals of Paris agreement. They are also encouraged to formulate low emissions development strategies to set the framework towards their efforts.
  • Despite the countries pledges in the NDCs to limit global warming and climate policies, it is unlikely that we will reach Paris Agreement targets (according to climate action tracker), which poses great threats to humanity and the coming generations. There would be serious issues to the supply of potable water, associated with sea level rise and extreme weather events (floods, hurricanes, tornadoes etc.).
  • In response to the pressing climate change threats, the European Green deal introduced a package of measures to cut GHG emissions and invest in research and innovative measures with the aim of reducing GHG emissions by 55% in 2030 and becoming a climate neutral continent in 2050.
  • Such emission reduction targets require the development of emission reduction pathways with a predefined climate target and that are cost effective over a specified period of time.
  • At Trinomics, we are actively engaged in a range of projects which aim to address climate change mitigation through the assessment of current policies, strategies and emissions reductions pathways that are currently in place as well as the development of roadmaps to achieve climate neutrality. We have a strong team with the right expertise for policy analysis and development of policy recommendations. We also have substantial expertise in data collection and analysis, stakeholders’ consultations, scenarios modelling and conducting impact assessments according to better regulations guidelines.
  • For instance, we were involved in the study to assess the carbon leakage risk under EU ETS phases 3 and 4, to provide insights whether the sectors assessed could be more / less challenged and exposed to carbon leakage in EU ETS Phase 4 in a scenario of stepped-up climate ambition in the EU. We also estimated the emissions abatement potential for the assessed sectors by year 2030 (European Commission – DG Climate Action Project).
  • We are also working on an in-depth analysis on “Moving towards a Zero-Emission Steel Making Process-Technologies Available, Prospects, Timeline and Costs” (European Parliament Project). The study should enable the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE) to establish an independent view on the progress made in the recent years, on the ongoing actions and adequacy of future measures to be taken in the broad domain of zero emission steel making.
  • We were also involved in a study on EU ETS for maritime transport and possible alternative options or combinations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (European Commission – DG Environment Project).
See Emission reduction pathways

For more information:

Marwa Mahmoud

Climate agreements and policies

  • In December 2015, the Paris Agreement made history as the first legally binding global climate change agreement. This set out a global framework to limit global warming to well below 2°C and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. In December 2019, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen launched the new European Green Deal (EGD), which sets out a goal for Europe’s economy and society to become climate-neutral by 2050. In effect this means going beyond the Paris Agreement ambition, by achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions in the EU, mainly by reducing emissions, investing in green technologies, and protecting the natural environment. The European Commission made this goal legally binding  through the European Climate Law. In the Commission work programme for 2021, the revisions and initiatives linked to the EGD climate actions and in particular the climate target plan’s 55 % net reduction target are presented under the Fit for 55 package.
  • In this context of increased climate neutrality ambition of the EGD and the rising tide of severe climate change impacts, ensuring the EU upholds its existing commitments to the Paris Agreement is more than ever of critical importance. European and national policies are driving the implementation of climate mitigation and adaptation action.
  • Trinomics is providing policy support to the European Commission and a broad range of national governments, through impact assessments, evaluations, open public consultations, the development of climate strategies and implementation road maps.
  • We have a large track record in working on climate mitigation and adaptation policies. In the mitigation field, we have experience in working on the Emission Trading System (ETS), carbon pricing and emission reduction goals. In the adaptation field, we have recently worked on the impact assessment of the New EU Adaptation Strategy, the effects of climate adaptation on employment and the development of adaptation policies in developing countries such as Mozambique. At a cross-cutting level, our experts are working on several EU climate policies, such as climate mainstreaming in the EU budget, the assessment of National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) and the Long-Term Strategies (LTS). Moreover, we are working on climate policy programme evaluations for philantrophy organisations, such as the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) and the European Climate Foundation
See Climate agreements and policies

For more information:

Tessa Zell

Climate co-benefits

  • Addressing climate change can have multiple benefits. The IPCC 1.5°C report defined co-benefits as “The positive effects that a policy or measure aimed at one objective might have on other objectives, thereby increasing the total benefits for society or the environment”. As such, co-benefits derived from greenhouse gas emissions reductions can include cleaner air (and savings on medical expenses for air pollution-related health problems), creation of green jobs, savings in energy costs due to increased energy efficiency, improved energy security due to diversification of energy sources, among many others.
  • Still today, some of the co-benefits of reducing emissions are largely unknown to many people, and very often overlooked by policymakers. In fact, in spite of the solid evidence about the economic, environmental and social advantages of climate action, policies addressing climate change remain to be a subject of debate and objection, and in many cases, concerns over mitigation costs slow down the adoption of a more ambitious climate agenda. As public and political support are critical to advance on policies implementation, failing in acknowledging and communicating the positive effects of climate policies could further delay the transition towards a low carbon economy. In contrast, recognising the positive effects would not only allow better-informed decision making and guide investments but also promote policies that benefit not only the climate but the society as a whole.
  • At Trinomics, we are currently engaged in a variety of projects related to building awareness and knowledge of climate co-benefits. Throughout the years, we have been actively involved in projects that include the evaluation of benefits of climate and environmental policies at the global, national and city levels. Among others, we have supported the EEA in identifying the benefits of green and nature-based infrastructure compared to traditional grey infrastructure solutions (such as efficient flood protection) and further expand the knowledge on how to include these into economic analysis and decision-making processes. Furthermore, our team have assessed the co-benefits of shifting towards a sustainable mobility system including, for instance, reduction of oil dependency and health costs, increased EU competitiveness, and job creation. Trinomics was also part of the core teams that assessed the implications of climate change adaptation on employment and the low-carbon energy technologies in the EU Competitiveness. At the international level, we have supported multiple organisations, such as the World Bank, to identify the development impacts of their climate funded projects, comprising -besides environmental- social, markets, economic and gender impacts.
See Climate co-benefits

For more information:

Tatiana Cuervo Blanco