One of the most complex and salient questions remaining in climate change policy modeling is the appropriate treatment of technological change (TC). The approach to modeling TC is widely considered to be one of the most important determinants of the results of climate policy analyses; that is, the level of emissions abatement that can be achieved at a given cost. In this context, TC can be understood as the increase in outputs (including abatement) possible with a given level of inputs (including emissions) through the processes of invention, innovation, and diffusion. Unfortunately, the complex mechanisms by which these processes work are not captured easily in modeling frameworks, creating significant difficulties for modelers attempting to determine the effects of climate policies that inevitably are intertwined with TC in energy supply and demand technologies. In climate change policy models, endogenous technology change (ETC) implies incorporating a feedback mechanism by which policy changes the direction, and possibly the overall level, of TC toward carbon-saving technology change. This feedback occurs through channels such as energy prices, research and development (R&D), or learning through past experience. This contrasts with exogenous assumptions about the rate of overall and carbonsaving TC, which are unresponsive to policy. This paper addresses several specific questions. What are the major assumptions regarding TC in climate policy models and, more specifically, currently how is TC made endogenous? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these approaches? And finally, what can we learn from these approaches?
Climate change is defined as a long-term shift or alteration in the climate of a specific location, region or the entire planet. The earth’s climate has varied significantly over its geological past. There have been ice ages when the global mean temperature was about 5 8C lower than its present value, and interglacial periods when the mean temperature was about one degree warmer than the current value. These variations have been caused by solar changes, volcanic emissions and greenhouse gases (GHGs) (McBean et al., 2001). The concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2), a major greenhouse gas, in the atmosphere has fluctuated between 180 and 310 ppm during the last 400,000 years (Petit et al., 1999). However, over the last two centuries, the atmospheric CO2 concentration rose from about 280 ppm at the start of the industrial revolution to 368 ppm at the start of this century (McBean et al., 2001).
The Tropical Forest Group (TFG) is an Accredited Observer to the UNFCCC and has experience in reducing emissions from deforestation in developing countries (REDD+). We have a background in REDD+ policy, technical work, methodologies, financing, and program design and review, at multiple scales. The Cancun Agreements call for submissions by Accredited Organizations in paragraphs #28 (adaptation), #82 (market‐ based mechanisms), #86 (non‐market mechanisms), #87 (cost effectiveness and ìanyother relevant activities for synthesis by the secretariatî), and #94 (subsidiary bodies work programs on impacts). This report responds to those requests for submissions and calls for the immediate creation of a new UNFCCC REDD+ Mechanism. REDD+ has emerged as one of the most advanced concepts in international climate change cooperation. Since the end of 2005, significant REDD+ progress is evident inside and outside the UNFCCC process. This collective progress has begun to align REDD+ needs identified by developing countries with support from developed countries. The UNFCCC process has been an instrumental forum for generating new organizations, technical advancements, and increased global financing to stem deforestation. The UNFCCC REDD+ conversation has also inspired novelty, innovation and debate within civil society, non‐profit and for‐profit organizations, and governments. Despite all of this momentum, the Cancun Agreements failed to deliver a comprehensive agreement on a UNFCCC REDD+ Mechanism. The landscape of REDD+initiatives has reached a point of dangerous disaggregation. Many initiatives on REDD+ inspired by the UNFCCC process now need coordination and oversight through a comprehensive REDD+ Mechanism. Such a global mechanism must coordinate participation, funding, technical submissions and review, establishment of baselines and reference levels, guidance on safeguards, integration across scales, and overall governance and transparency. If the UNFCCC cannot agree on a REDD+ Mechanism in 2011, progress on REDD+ will falter. Entities working on REDD+ inside and outside the UNFCCC will evolve in increasingly haphazard manners. This will lead to sub‐optimal and possibly even conflicting outcomes regarding participation, mitigation, adaptation, finance, application of best practices, safeguards, and measurement, reporting and verification(MRV).
As a result of evidence that human-induced global climate change is already occurring and will continue to affect society over the coming decades, a surge in interest in impact-oriented action is discernable since the beginning of the century, in contrast to efforts centred on prevention (Burton et al., 2002). Frustration over the lack of progress and effectiveness of policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions has contributed to this shift. Adapting to the changes has consequently emerged as a solution to address the impacts of climate change that are already evident in some regions. However, this course of action has not always been considered relevant within science and policy (Schipper, 2006a; Klein, 2003). Adaptation responds directly to the impacts of the increased concentrations of greenhouse gases in both precautionary and reactive ways, rather than through the preventative approach of limiting the source of the gases (this is known as ‘mitigation’). This avoids the enormous political obstacles facing initiatives to curtail the burning of fossil fuels by factories, transport and other sectors. Adaptation to climate change is considered especially relevant for developing countries, where societies are already struggling to meet the challenges posed by existing climate variability (Yamin et al. 2005; Adger et al., 2003; Handmer, 2003; Kates, 2000; Watson and Ackerman, 2000), and are therefore expected to be the most adversely affected by climate change (McCarthyet al., 2001). The recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report makes clear that “adaptation will be necessary to address impacts resulting from the warming which is already unavoidable due to past emissions” (IPCC,complimentary response strategy to mitigation.
The global economic crisis began with financial turmoil in the United States that rapidly spread to the rest of the world to create the worst global economic downturn since the Great Depression. Following more than a year of turmoil a full blown banking crisis erupted in September 2008. Financial institutions around the globe had to write off huge loans and the structured finance market collapsed. Financial problems were soon transmitted to the real sectors of major industrial countries pushing them into recession and collapsing world trade. Asian financial institutions and the banking sector had little exposure to the toxic security assets at the heart of the financial crisis and Asian banks were well capitalized with sound portfolios. Thus, for some time, there was hope of a ‘decoupling’ between Asia and the rest of the world. This hope vanished rapidly as foreign investors reduced their leverage by selling off assets to raise cash and demand for Asian exports declined. Hope turned to fear that the global recession would through increased unemployment and reduction in public spending, lead to an increase in poverty levels and widespread socioeconomic problems. Underlying these fears were three issues specific to Asia.
Adaptation is becoming a key issue of post-2012 international climate policy negotiations. The December 2009 Copenhagen Accord (1) establishes that by 2020 developed countries will provide US$ 100 billion per year to address the needs of de veloping countries, including funding for adaptation. Indeed, even ambitious mitigation policies [e.g., the 2 °C target proposed by the European Union (EU) and endorsed by the G8 (2, 3)] will need to be complemented by adaptation strategies to lessen the impact of residual warming (4). Europe is preparing for a coordinated adaptation climate strategy from 2013, as set out in the European Commission White Paper on Adaptation (5). One of its main conclusions is that much still is unknown about the potential impacts of climate change on the European economy as a whole or with respect to different economic sectors and geographical regions of Europe (6–9).
Our study empirically investigates the effects of the Kyoto Protocol’s quantified emission limitation or reduction commitments on various greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions such as CO2, CH4, N2O and other greenhouse gases, consisting of HFCs, PFCs and SF6. These GHG emissions are considered to be the main source of global warming issues and 39 countries approved to meet the commitments by ratifying the Kyoto Protocol. Our empirical analysis is based on the STIRPAT model, the stochastic version of the IPAT model, using the data of 119 countries in 1990, 1995, 2000 and 2005. Our main findings are that the effects of the commitments to the Kyoto Protocol (1) are significantly negative for the cases of CO2 and CH4 emissions, (2) are not significant for the case of N2O emissions and (3) are significantly positive for the case of other greenhouse gas emissions. These results have important policy implications for global warming issues.
The severity of damaging human-induced climate change depends not only on the magnitude of the change but also on the potential for irreversibility. This paper shows that the climate change that takes place due to increases in carbon dioxide concentration is largely irreversible for 1,000 years after emissions stop. Following cessation of emissions, removal of atmospheric carbon dioxide decreases radiative forcing, but is largely compensated by slower loss of heat to the ocean, so that atmospheric temperatures do notdrop significantly for at least 1,000 years. Among illustrative irreversible impacts that should be expected if atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations increase from current levels near 385 parts per million by volume (ppmv) to a peak of 450–600 ppmv over thecoming century are irreversible dry-season rainfall reductions in several regions comparable to those of the ‘‘dust bowl’’ era and inexorable sea level rise. Thermal expansion of the warming ocean provides a conservative lower limit to irreversible global average sea level rise of at least 0.4 1.0 m if 21st century CO2 concentrations exceed 600 ppmv and 0.6 –1.9 m for peak CO2 concentrations exceeding _1,000 ppmv. Additional contributions from glaciers and ice sheet contributions to future sea level rise are uncertain but may equal or exceed several meters over the next millennium or longer.
The links between climate change and food security have, to date, largely been explored in relation to impacts on crop productivity and hence, food production. For instance, Gregory et al. (1999) summarized experimental findings on wheat and rice that indicated decreased crop duration (and hence yield) of wheat as a consequence of warming and reductions in yields of rice of about 5% 8CK1 rise above 32 8C. These effects of temperature were considered sufficiently detrimental that they would largely offset any increase in yield as a consequence of increased atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration. Several reviews (e.g. Amthor 2001; Fuhrer 2003) have further assessed the potential consequences of changes in climate on the growth and yield of crop plants, concluding that the earlier-anticipated benefits of CO2 fertilization would be largely offset by nutrient limitations, pollutants and further interactions with climatic factors (see also Long et al. 2005).
Pakistan is at a conjunctural moment in its history as it faces a multifaceted crisis. At the end of the decade of the 1990s, the government faced financial bankruptcy, the real economy was in deep recession, there was an unprecedented increase in poverty, and the institutions of governance had eroded to a point where the structure of the State was threatened. As a contribution to the on going effort to overcome this crisis of the human condition in Pakistan, The National Human Development Report (NHDR) aims to address three questions: (1) What is the nature of this crisis? (2) How did it reach this point? (3) How can it be overcome? In examining the first question, we have identified the structural features of the economy which have given rise to narrowing fiscal space, slow GDP growthand rising poverty.