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Lords explore how trade interacts with environment and climate policies

19 January 2021

Tomorrow, the House of Lords International Agreements Committee will hear from experts on the interactions between international trade, and climate and environmental policies.

The session will cover how conflicts between trade and environmental and climate policies can be resolved, how sustainable development chapters in free trade agreements can be improved, and whether the UK’s commitments in these areas could be undermined if entering trade negotiations with countries that have lower ambitions.

The remote evidence session will take place from 4pm on Wednesday 20 January and can be followed on Parliament TV.

Giving evidence will be:

  • Dr Emily Lydgate, Deputy Director of the UK Trade Policy Observatory and Senior Lecturer at University of Sussex
  • Susan Stone, Head, Emerging Policy Issues Division, Trade and Agriculture Directorate, OECD
  • Kate Young, Senior Public Affairs Officer, Aldersgate Group

Questions are likely to include:

  • Can you give us a brief overview of how trade and environmental and climate policy currently interact? Are they in conflict with each other?
  • How can sustainable development chapters in free trade agreements (FTAs) be improved to be more effective?
  • How can environmental and climate related provisions be mainstreamed throughout an agreement?
  • How can trade in environmental goods and services be facilitated?
  • With the UK entering trade negotiations with countries with higher carbon emissions or lower environmental and climate ambitions, is there a risk that the UK’s own commitments could be undermined?
  • How can countries ensure that domestic environmental objectives meet the WTO obligations, especially with regards to environmental subsidies and a carbon border tax?

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