Mid- and long-term climate projections for fragmented and delayed-action scenarios

Schaeffer M, Gohar L, Kriegler E, Lowe J, Riahi K, & van Vuuren DP (2015). Mid- and long-term climate projections for fragmented and delayed-action scenarios. Technological Forecasting and Social Change 90 (Part A): 257-268. DOI:10.1016/j.techfore.2013.09.013.

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Abstract

This paper explores the climate consequences of "delayed near-term action" and "staged accession" scenarios for limiting warming below 2 degrees-C. The stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations at low levels requires a large-scale transformation of the energy system. Depending on policy choices, there are alternative pathways to reach this objective. An "optimal" path, as emerging from energy-economic modeling, implies immediate action with stringent emission reductions, while the currently proposed international policies translate into reduction delays and higher near-term emissions. In our "delayed action" scenarios, low stabilization levels need thus to be reached from comparatively high 2030 emission levels. Negative consequences are higher economic cost as explored in accompanying papers and significantly higher mid-term warming, as indicated by a rate of warming 50% higher by the 2040s. By contrast, both mid- and long-term warming are significantly higher in another class of scenarios of staged "accession" that lets some regions embark on emission reductions, while others follow later, with conservation of carbon-price pathways comparable to the "optimal" scenarios. Not only is mid-term warming higher in "staged accession" cases, but the probability to exceed 2 degrees-C in the 21st century increases by a factor of 1.5.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Climate modeling; Copenhagen Pledges; Climate policy; AMPERE; Integrated assessment; Greenhouse gas emissions
Research Programs: Energy (ENE)
Transitions to New Technologies (TNT)
Bibliographic Reference: Technological Forecasting and Social Change; 90(Part.A):257-268 (January 2015) (Published online 31 October 2013)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:53
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2016 14:46
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/11544

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