Free Trade at What Cost? Impacts on Climate and Inequality
International trade agreements may not be consistent with nations’ domestic climate goals and international greenhouse gas reduction commitments. A report released this month by Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy (IATP) looks and the tension between climate goals and international trade rules. The IATP authors take impacts on global inequality into consideration in their review citing a recent Global Development and Environment Institute (GDAE) analysis that found overall negative economic effects from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement that included tepid or even negative economic growth, job losses, and increasing income inequality. Reforms suggested in the IATP report include changes to trade rules that conflict with clean energy policies and protections for farmers’ rights and food reserves.