Long-Term Multi-Gas Scenarios to Stabilise Radiative Forcing
The costs of a climate policy strategy targeting all greenhouse gases are substantially lower than a strategy targeting energy-related CO2 alone. This is one of the conclusions of a recent study by the Stanford University-based Energy Modeling Forum (EMF). MNP provided important input in the form of IMAGE 2 model applications, including TIMER and FAIR.
Climate policy needs to focus on all greenhouse gases
This paper presents a set of multi-gas mitigation scenarios that aim for stabilisation of greenhouse gas radiative forcing in 2150 at levels from 3.7 to 5.3 W/m2. At the moment, non-CO2 gasses (methane, nitrous oxide, PFCs, HFCs and SF6) contribute to about a quarter of the global emissions. The analysis shows that including these non-CO2 gases in mitigation analysis is crucial in formulating a cost-effective response. For stabilisation at 4.5 W/m2, a multi-gas approach leads to 40% lower costs than an approach that would focus at CO2- only. Within the assumptions used in this study, the non-CO2 gasses contribution to total reduction is very large under less stringent targets (up to 60%), but declines under stringent targets. While stabilising at 3.7 W/m2 obviously leads to larger environmental benefits than the 4.5 W/m2 case (temperature increase in 2100 are 1.9 and 2.3oC, respectively), the costs of the lower target are higher (0.80% and 0.34% of GDP in 2100, respectively). Improving knowledge on how future reduction potential for non-CO2 gasses could develop is shown to be a crucial research question.
- abstract of the overall IAEE study: Multigas Mitigation and Climate policy
- the article: Multi-gas scenarios to stabilize radiative forcing
- Site of The Energy Journal
|Author(s)||Van Vuuren DP, Eickhout B, Lucas PL, Den Elzen MDG|
|Publication||The Energy Journal; Multi-Greenhouse Gas Mitigation and Climate Policy, Special Issue #3; December 2006|