In March this year the French Minister of Agriculture presented the ‘4 per 1000’ initiative at the Climate-Smart Agriculture conference in Montpellier. A brochure2 published by the ministry presents an initiative that puts agriculture at the heart of climate issues, not only as the sector most affected by climate change and as a producer of greenhouse gasses, but also as a solution in terms of mitigation. It also set the ‘4 per 1000’ initiative within the Agenda of Solutions3 promoted by the French and Peruvian presidencies of the COP20 and 21 and the Secretary General of the United Nations, despite the uncertainties surrounding it at this stage.
Carbon pricing is likely to be one of the ingredients of the climate agreement negotiated during COP21. In 1997, the Kyoto Protocol launched the festivities via an international CO2 emission allowance trading system. It gave rise to an international carbon price which serves as a reference today. Yet carbon has several prices and limiting a ton of CO2 simply to a price defined by a market means that its social value is overlooked.