Policies and Wider Impacts

Supporting environmental policies, measures and action

Businesses and local and national governments are now responding to challenges to reduce greenhouse gases and air pollutants in the atmosphere. Aether’s data gathering, analysis and system development enables our customers to make the right strategic environmental decisions and meet demanding reporting and transparency commitments. Aether provides tailored services ranging from review/assessment of data and systems through innovative training and capacity building solutions to complete hassle free data gathering, compilation and reporting services. This service is closely linked to Aether’s inventory and projections support services.

For more infromation contact Katrina Young

Supporting decision making

Actions, policies and measures that focus on reducing greenhouse gases and air pollutants can be at the business, organisational, national, city or local level. They can be short term and/or long term. They may focus on a specific sector (such as phasing out incandescent light bulbs) or be more cross-cutting (such as a national energy efficiency plan).

Aether supports customers with high quality analysis on the impacts of possible actions and their wider co-benefits or possible dis-benefits. Aether provides tailored services ranging from review/assessment of data and systems through innovative training and capacity building solutions to complete hassle free data gathering, compilation and reporting services. Analysis of the GHG and wider impacts of mitigation actions can support decision making processes and business cases for action.

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Emissions forecasting and reporting

Air pollutant and greenhouse gas projections provide a baseline and possible future scenarios.  Aether’s expertise in data gathering, analysis and forecasting helps our customers to establish achievable targets for improved environmental performance.

We are increasingly working with local authorities in the UK on modelling pathways to net zero targets set by climate emergency declarations. These pathways can be used to support decision making on climate action and building back better from Covid-19.

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Co-benefits of policies and measures

Integrating effective environmental action into economic, social and sustainable development requires more than the simple presentation of actions, their costs and environmental benefits. It requires a broader consideration of the wider impacts (co-benefits and adverse impacts) of the action with respect to core economic, social and sustainable development goals. 

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Supporting International reporting

There are multiple requirements for international reporting of policies and measures. Aether has been providing support for many of these.

  • EU Member States are required to report information of policies and measures, and projections, regarding climate change mitigation every two years under the Governance of the Energy Union and Climate Action (Regulation (EU) 2018/1999).
  • Aether has been involved in the development of guidelines for Member States for reporting these data sets (and previously, under the Monitoring Mechanism Regulation), and evaluation of the data submitted.
  • Under the global Paris Agreement (Article 13 on “Transparency”) Parties are required to provide concise information on their climate action and demonstrate that they have the capacity and systems in place to track progress. Our MRV systems work links to this policy support. 
  • Aether is also supporting EU Member States and the European Environment Agency on the analysis and reporting of information on their additional policies that reduce national air pollution emissions, as required under the National Emissions Ceiling Directive (European Commission Implementing Decision (EU) 2018/1522).
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Case studies

Developing a comprehensive approach to nitrogen in the UK

Aether, alongside project partners the Stockholm Environment Institute, the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, and Plantlife International, undertook a study for WWF of the nitrogen cycles and pathways in the UK and reviewed existing strategies and policies that could affect the balance of nitrogen in the environment.

Support to the European Environment Agency

Aether has been providing support to the European Environment Agency through their European Topic Centres since 2014, focussing on air pollution, industrial pollution and climate change mitigation.

EU Forest Reference Levels

Aether provided support to the European Commission and the LULUCF Expert Group in the technical assessment of EU Member State's National Forestry Accounting Plans.

Lewisham Route to Neutral

Support to Lewisham Council to define the route to carbon neutral for the Borough

Antigua and Barbuda Biennial Update Report (BUR)

Aether has been supporting Antigua and Barbuda on their first Biennial Update Report (BUR) by writing the Mitigation chapter. This work will enable Antigua and Barbuda to report transparently on initiatives addressing climate change mitigation and adaptation. Also the climate action database will enable the Department of Environment to take stock of climate related initiatives across the country, including the flow of climate finance, and relate this to national strategies and targets.

South Africa Climate Action Tracking and Evaluation System

Aether worked with Gondwana Environmental Solutions to support South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF) to develop an innovative online platform for gathering, analysing and reporting climate mitigation and adaptation actions. The system acts as a central registry for climate actions alongside associated climate challenges, targets, support needed, wider impacts and indicators.

Electric vehicles from life cycle and circular economy perspectives

A report written for the European Environment Agency that used an extensive literature review to analyse and synthesis the environmental impacts of electric vehicles though life cycle and circular economy perspectives.

Montenegro Climate Change Action MRV System

In cooperation with UNDP through the GEF funded project “Development of Montenegro’s Second BUR”, Aether has been supporting Montenegro in developing a monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) system for its climate change mitigation and adaptation actions.

Irish Environmental Protection Agency

Aether supports the Irish Environmental Protection Agency with the preparation and submission of Ireland's National Emissions Inventory of Greenhouse Gases under the EU Monitoring Mechanism and Air Quality Pollutants under the National Emissions Ceiling Directive.

Luxembourg Climate Action: Stakeholder engagement and reporting Portal

Aether developed an innovative online platform, or Portal, for gathering, analysing and reporting Luxembourg’s climate policies and measures. The Portal acts as a central point for stakeholder engagement and keeps a live master list of national climate actions, with associated impact and cost analysis.

Emission Inventory Support for Environment Agency of Iceland

Aether is supporting the Environment Agency of Iceland in the compilation of its greenhouse gas and air quality emissions inventories as well as projections and policies and measures. We are helping to ensure that Iceland’s inventory is robust and of high quality.

Oxford Sustainability Index

Aether was appointed to develop a Sustainability Index for Oxford, comparing the city’s performance with others.

North East Scotland sustainable energy action plan

Aether led the development of the North East Scotland Sustainable Energy Action Plan (SEAP) for Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen City, Angus and Moray.

Testimonials

Don't just take our word for it...

“We have been collaborating with Aether for several years, and our projects have greatly benefited from it. Aether staff are very knowledgeable, professional and flexible - and last but not least, very friendly and a pleasure to work with.”

Umhverfisstofnun, Environment Agency of Iceland

“Aether delivered training workshops and generated learning materials for our SSN members, providing technical content in a manageable and comprehendible format. We particularly benefitted from their extensive knowledge and ability to interpret the needs of our members into the training materials.”

Jennifer Anderson, Sustainable Scotland Network

“The Aether team were a joy to work with and I would recommend the consultancy - the service provided throughout the process was exceptional.”

Clare Bayley, Defra

“I must congratulate each of you for your professional and tireless efforts. Let me point out that this has been the 'neatest' in-country review expert review team I have coordinated, and it has been a real pleasure.”

UNFCCC Secretariat

“Aether was a great asset in involving/engaging with Member States experts on highly technical subjects regarding GHG reporting. Very clear communication of issues and results.”

Andreas Pilzecker, DG CLIMA

“The professional service provided by your company was of very high quality and completed within agreed timelines.”

Matthew Dudley, UNFCCC Secretariat

“Saint Lucia embraces the professional approach with which this project was undertaken by Aether, particularly their ability to develop mentorship relations with local government experts. This provides a basis for ensuring that the pool of local experts remain engaged and recognized over successive processes.”

Annette Rattigan-Leo, Chief Sustainable Development and Environment Officer

“If we have a need for any more reports in the future Aether will be first on my list.”

Alan Hardy, Kyson Design

“Aether's approach to couple innovative visualisation with high expertise manpower delivered valuable insights for our inventory work.”

Umweltbundesamt (Germany)

“Engaging Aether to support us to develop the first GHG Inventory System and first Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) for the United Republic of Tanzania has been a rewarding experience due to their high level of professionalism, creativity, timeliness and value for money. We will definitely consider Aether in our future initiatives.”

Abbas Kitogo, Programme Specialist Energy and Climate Change, UNDP Tanzania

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