Whitmarsh, Robert B. and Knight, David P.
Setting limits and targets for greenhouse gas emissions at local level: A case study based on the District of Winchester, UK
Journal of Urban Research and Practice, 3, (1), . (doi:10.1080/17535060903534230).
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We introduce climate change and those aspects of global warming that are required to understand the rationale behind the setting of emissions targets. We then review recent evidence that indicates that immediate and substantial action needs to be taken globally to cut emissions of carbon dioxide in order to keep its atmospheric concentration at a ‘safe’ level. This limit implies a range of cumulative carbon dioxide emissions budgets for the UK from now until 2050. We adopt a figure at the low end of the range to derive a comparable budget for Winchester, UK. Given Winchester’s consumption emissions of 1.52 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2004, we calculate an emissions pathway until 2050 consistent with this budget. This suggests annual reductions of 6.7% are required. Our methodology can be applied to other local authority areas provided relevant statistics are available.
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