The University of Newcastle, Australia
Fast facts

4 weeks


2-3 hours per week


FREE - Add a verified certificate for US$49





About this course

Learn about the evolution and architecture of international law and policy to combat climate change. Take a close look at the 2015 Paris Agreement (UNFCCC) from both a legal and economic perspective.

This course will equip you with the fundamentals of International Climate Change Law and Policy. You will learn to critically assess Environmental Economics theory and its application to climate change policy, including the use of market-based policy approaches such as environmental taxes and emissions trading.

International Climate Change Law and Policy will discuss a range of controversial debates, reflecting the highly politicised nature of international Climate Change Law.

The course is of particular interest to professionals in environmental and resources sectors, public policy, government sector, non-government sector and private sector (e.g. sustainability consulting).

What you'll learn

  • Critically assess the causes of Climate Change and distinguish its impacts in relation to different countries and generations,
  • Understand the legal principles, rules and institutions of the international climate change regime,
  • Explain how markets function and fail by applying the Theory of Externalities,
  • Compare and contrast Taxes and Cap-and-Trade, with a focus on efficiency and effectiveness,
  • Demonstrate intercultural awareness and sensitivity to the social and economic perspectives of other nations.

Course Syllabus

  • Week 1: Introduction to Climate Change and the Social Cost of Carbon
    The Scientific Evidence
    Key Polluting Countries
    Introduction to Carbon Accounting
    Projected Impacts
    Valuing Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Introduction to the Social Cost of Carbon
  • Week 2: Evolution and Architecture of the International Climate Change Regime
    The United National Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
    The Kyoto Protocol
    The Paris Agreement: A new paradigm of international cooperation
  • Week 3: Climate Change Policy and The Theory of Externalities
    Introduction to the theory of Externalities
    The Pigouvian Tax
    Problems with Pigouvian Taxation
  • Week 4: How Prices Can Save the Global Climate: The Standard-Price-Approach
    The Standard-Price-Approach
    Taxes vs. Cap-and-Trade
    Efficiency and Effectiveness

Meet the instructors

Dr Elena Aydos

Dr Elena Aydos

Senior Lecturer, Newcastle Law School. University of Newcastle, Australia

Associate Professor Sven Rudolph

Associate Professor Sven Rudolph

Associate Professor, Kyoto University, Japan

Professor Christopher Kellett

Professor Christopher Kellett

Professor, School of Electrical Engineering and Computing. University of Newcastle, Australia.

Related degrees