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A global assessment of the effects of climate policy on the impacts of climate change

A global assessment of the effects of climate policy on the impacts of climate change
A global assessment of the effects of climate policy on the impacts of climate change
This study presents the first global-scale multi-sectoral regional assessment of the magnitude and uncertainty in the impacts of climate change avoided by emissions policies. The analysis suggests that the most stringent emissions policy considered here—which gives a 50% chance of remaining below a 2 ºC temperature rise target—reduces impacts by 20–65% by 2100 relative to a ‘business-as-usual’ pathway which reaches 4 ºC, and can delay impacts by several decades. The effects of mitigation policies vary between sectors and regions, and only a few are noticeable by 2030. The impacts avoided by 2100 are more strongly influenced by the date and level at which emissions peak than the rate of decline of emissions, with an earlier and lower emissions peak avoiding more impacts. The estimated proportion of impacts avoided at the global scale is relatively robust despite uncertainty in the spatial pattern of climate change, but the absolute amount of avoided impacts is considerably more variable and therefore uncertain.
1758-678X
512-519
Arnell, N.W.
196119de-cdf5-4ba8-a5d5-5e5cf4c88085
Lowe, J.A.
16f7a8e7-f872-4801-8f57-c305ffb1106d
Brown, S.
dd3c5852-78cc-435a-9846-4f3f540f2840
Gosling, S.N.
7e7aad57-1429-4f32-8830-41535e4475a6
Gottschalk, P.
349dbb05-ce0a-4914-8789-96e3fd9b34d2
Hinkel, J.
ad8c8187-dcca-42f5-84e0-75d30a1e7875
Lloyd-Hughes, B.
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Nicholls, R.J.
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Osborn, T.J.
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Osborne, T.M.
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Rose, G.A.
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Smith, P.
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Warren, R.F.
f0ed798e-f52c-4e69-9541-9a0639f5a6b9
Arnell, N.W.
196119de-cdf5-4ba8-a5d5-5e5cf4c88085
Lowe, J.A.
16f7a8e7-f872-4801-8f57-c305ffb1106d
Brown, S.
dd3c5852-78cc-435a-9846-4f3f540f2840
Gosling, S.N.
7e7aad57-1429-4f32-8830-41535e4475a6
Gottschalk, P.
349dbb05-ce0a-4914-8789-96e3fd9b34d2
Hinkel, J.
ad8c8187-dcca-42f5-84e0-75d30a1e7875
Lloyd-Hughes, B.
6b739008-63f2-4691-8f37-6ca682a8f7cd
Nicholls, R.J.
4ce1e355-cc5d-4702-8124-820932c57076
Osborn, T.J.
46450aea-60a7-4281-808d-946418793a4a
Osborne, T.M.
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Rose, G.A.
88484541-6012-4a87-ba56-b20efde54e3a
Smith, P.
11f678ab-4aee-426a-aedd-19719d80bbbc
Warren, R.F.
f0ed798e-f52c-4e69-9541-9a0639f5a6b9

Arnell, N.W., Lowe, J.A., Brown, S., Gosling, S.N., Gottschalk, P., Hinkel, J., Lloyd-Hughes, B., Nicholls, R.J., Osborn, T.J., Osborne, T.M., Rose, G.A., Smith, P. and Warren, R.F. (2013) A global assessment of the effects of climate policy on the impacts of climate change. Nature Climate Change, 3, 512-519. (doi:10.1038/nclimate1793).

Record type: Article

Abstract

This study presents the first global-scale multi-sectoral regional assessment of the magnitude and uncertainty in the impacts of climate change avoided by emissions policies. The analysis suggests that the most stringent emissions policy considered here—which gives a 50% chance of remaining below a 2 ºC temperature rise target—reduces impacts by 20–65% by 2100 relative to a ‘business-as-usual’ pathway which reaches 4 ºC, and can delay impacts by several decades. The effects of mitigation policies vary between sectors and regions, and only a few are noticeable by 2030. The impacts avoided by 2100 are more strongly influenced by the date and level at which emissions peak than the rate of decline of emissions, with an earlier and lower emissions peak avoiding more impacts. The estimated proportion of impacts avoided at the global scale is relatively robust despite uncertainty in the spatial pattern of climate change, but the absolute amount of avoided impacts is considerably more variable and therefore uncertain.

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More information

Published date: 13 January 2013
Organisations: Energy & Climate Change Group

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 352028
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/352028
ISSN: 1758-678X
PURE UUID: bcfad7a4-37b9-4706-a735-eeb75c10aee6
ORCID for S. Brown: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-1185-1962
ORCID for R.J. Nicholls: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9715-1109

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 01 May 2013 11:30
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 12:44

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Contributors

Author: N.W. Arnell
Author: J.A. Lowe
Author: S. Brown ORCID iD
Author: S.N. Gosling
Author: P. Gottschalk
Author: J. Hinkel
Author: B. Lloyd-Hughes
Author: R.J. Nicholls ORCID iD
Author: T.J. Osborn
Author: T.M. Osborne
Author: G.A. Rose
Author: P. Smith
Author: R.F. Warren

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