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Climate Change and the Ethics of Individual Emissions: A Response to Sinnott-Armstrong  [PDF]
Ben Almassi
Perspectives : International Postgraduate Journal of Philosophy , 2012,
Abstract: Walter Sinnott-Armstrong argues, on the relationship between individual emissions and climate change, that “we cannot claim to know that it is morally wrong to drive a gas guzzler just for fun” or engage in other inessential emissions-producing individual activities. His concern is not uncertainty about the phenomenon of climate change, nor about human contribution to it. Rather, on Sinnott-Armstrong’s analysis the claim of individual moral responsibility for emissions must be grounded in a defensible moral principle, yet no principle withstands scrutiny. I argue thatthe moral significance of individual emissions is obscured by this critique. I offer a moral principle, the threshold-contribution principle, capable of withstanding Sinnott-Armstrong’s criticisms while also plausibly explaining what’s wrong with gas-guzzling joyrides and other gratuitous emissions-producing individual acts.
Contribution of oceanic and vegetation feedbacks to Holocene climate change in monsoonal Asia
A. Dallmeyer, M. Claussen,J. Otto
Climate of the Past (CP) & Discussions (CPD) , 2010,
Abstract: The impact of vegetation-atmosphere and ocean-atmosphere interactions on the mid- to late Holocene climate change as well as their synergy is studied for different parts of the Asian monsoon region, giving consideration to the large climatic and topographical heterogeneity in that area. We concentrate on temperature and precipitation changes as the main parameters describing monsoonal influenced climates. For our purpose, we analyse a set of coupled numerical experiments, performed with the comprehensive Earth system model ECHAM5/JSBACH-MPIOM under present-day and mid-Holocene (6 k) orbital configurations (Otto et al., 2009b). The temperature change caused by the insolation forcing reveals an enhanced seasonal cycle, with a pronounced warming in summer (0.58 K) and autumn (1.29 K) and a cooling in the other seasons (spring: -1.32 K; winter: -0.97 K). Most of this change can be attributed to the direct response of the atmosphere, but the ocean, whose reaction has a lagged seasonal cycle (warming in autumn and winter, cooling in the other seasons), strongly modifies the signal. The simulated contribution of dynamic vegetation is small and most effective in winter, where it slightly warms the near-surface atmosphere (approx. 0.03 K). The temperature difference attributed to the synergy is on average positive, but also small. Concerning the precipitation, the most remarkable change is the postponement and enhancement of the Asian monsoon (0.46 mm/day in summer, 0.53 mm/day in autumn), mainly related to the direct atmospheric response. On regional average, the interactive ocean (ca. 0.18 mm/day) amplifies the direct effect, but tends to weaken the East Asian summer monsoon and strongly increases the Indian summer monsoon rainfall rate (0.68 mm/day). The influence of dynamic vegetation on precipitation is comparatively small (<0.04 mm/day). The synergy effect has no influence, on average.
Contribution of oceanic and vegetation feedbacks to Holocene climate change in Central and Eastern Asia  [PDF]
A. Dallmeyer,M. Claussen,J. Otto
Climate of the Past Discussions , 2009,
Abstract: The impact of vegetation-atmosphere and ocean-atmosphere interactions on the mid- to late Holocene climate change as well as their synergy is studied for different regions in Central and Eastern Asia (60–140° E, 0–55° N), giving consideration to the large climatic and topographical heterogeneity in that area. With main focus on the Asian monsoon, we concentrate on both, temperature and precipitation changes. For our purpose, we analyze a set of coupled numerical experiments, performed with the Earth system model ECHAM5/JSBACH-MPIOM under present-day and mid-Holocene (6 k) orbital configurations (Otto et al., 2009). Like expected, the temperature change caused by the insolation forcing reveals an enhanced seasonal cycle, with a pronounced warming in summer (0.7 K) and autumn (1 K) and a cooling in the other seasons (spring: 0.8 K; winter 0.5 K). Most of this change can be attributed to the direct response of the atmosphere, but the ocean, whose reaction has a lagged seasonal cycle (warming in autumn and winter, cooling in the other seasons), strongly modifies the signal. The simulated contribution of dynamic vegetation is small and most effective in winter, where it slightly warms the near-surface atmosphere (≈0.05 K). Concerning the precipitation, the most remarkable change is the postponement and enhancement of the Asian monsoon (0.27 mm/d in summer, 0.23 mm/d in autumn), mainly related to the direct atmospheric response. On regional average, the ocean (ca. 0.05 mm/d) amplifies the direct effect, but tends to weaken the East Asian summer monsoon and strongly increases the Indian summer monsoon rainfall rate (0.68 mm/d). The influence of dynamic vegetation and synergy effects on precipitation is comparatively small.
Contribution of Livestock Production to Climate Change and Mitigation Options: A Review
JM Chah, EM Igbokwe
Journal of Agricultural Extension , 2012,
Abstract: An attempt is made to understand the role livestock production plays in climate change and to identify mitigation strategies to cap or reduce greenhouse (GHG) emissions. Scientific literature on farm animal production and documented GHG emission, as well as mitigation strategies were synthesized and used for the study. Results show that animal agriculture sector is responsible for approximately 18%, or nearly one-fifth of human induced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. In nearly every step of meat, egg, and milk production, climate changing gases are released into the atmosphere potentially disrupting weather, temperature and ecosystem health. As the number of farm animals increases, so do their GHG emissions. Cattle rearing alone generate more global warming GHGs, as measured in carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent, than transportation. Immediate and far reaching changes in current animal agriculture practices and consumption patterns are both critical if GHGs from the farm animal sector are to be mitigated. However, the approaches that best reduce emissions depend on local conditions and therefore vary from region to region. In Nigeria emission of GHGs is generally low based on low per capita energy and other resource consumption. However, it is expected that there will be future rise as a result of increased numbers of livestock and high population growth rate with corresponding increase in per capita energy and other resource consumption. The assessment of options to reduce future GHG emissions is considered an important contribution to sustainable development of Nigeria. Efficacious plants peculiar to the Nigerian environment and conditions should be planted and maintained around cities. Also government should support waste management in all the states in Nigeria to have a sequel structure to safe disposal of organic matter from cattle.
The Contribution of Energy Consumption to Climate Change: A Feasible Policy Direction
Usenobong Friday Akpan,Godwin Effiong Akpan
International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy , 2012,
Abstract: Mitigating climate change is one of the biggest challenges that confront mankind in the present millennium. The problem has continued to dominate public debates in terms of its origin, sources, potential impacts and possibly adaptation strategies. In this paper, the contributions of energy to the climate change debate are explored. The analysis shows that since about 1850, the global use of fossil fuels (coal, oil and gas) has increased and dominated world energy consumption and supply. The rapid rise in fossil fuel combustion has produced a corresponding rapid growth in CO2 emissions and accounts for over 80% of global anthropogenic green house gas emissions (GHGs) in 2008. It was shown that a substantial amount of CO2 emissions still emanates from the increased use of heavy polluting fuel like coal by industrializing countries like the United States, Japan and China. Historically, the developed countries have contributed the most to cumulative global CO2 emissions and still have the highest total historical emission. A disaggregated analysis indicates that two sectors of the economy, electricity and heat as well as the transport sector (majorly road transport), emit greater amounts of GHGs. Some mitigation mechanisms have been suggested including improved energy efficiency, energy pricing reforms, imposition of carbon emission taxes, promoting investment in renewable energy technologies and creating public environmental awareness.
An ensemble approach to assess hydrological models' contribution to uncertainties in the analysis of climate change impact on water resources
J. A. Velázquez, J. Schmid, S. Ricard, M. J. Muerth, B. Gauvin St-Denis, M. Minville, D. Chaumont, D. Caya, R. Ludwig,R. Turcotte
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS) & Discussions (HESSD) , 2013,
Abstract: Over the recent years, several research efforts investigated the impact of climate change on water resources for different regions of the world. The projection of future river flows is affected by different sources of uncertainty in the hydro-climatic modelling chain. One of the aims of the QBic3 project (Québec-Bavarian International Collaboration on Climate Change) is to assess the contribution to uncertainty of hydrological models by using an ensemble of hydrological models presenting a diversity of structural complexity (i.e., lumped, semi distributed and distributed models). The study investigates two humid, mid-latitude catchments with natural flow conditions; one located in Southern Québec (Canada) and one in Southern Bavaria (Germany). Daily flow is simulated with four different hydrological models, forced by outputs from regional climate models driven by global climate models over a reference (1971–2000) and a future (2041–2070) period. The results show that, for our hydrological model ensemble, the choice of model strongly affects the climate change response of selected hydrological indicators, especially those related to low flows. Indicators related to high flows seem less sensitive on the choice of the hydrological model.
An ensemble approach to assess hydrological models' contribution to uncertainties in the analysis of climate change impact on water resources
J. A. Velázquez,J. Schmid,S. Ricard,M. J. Muerth
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences Discussions , 2012, DOI: 10.5194/hessd-9-7441-2012
Abstract: Over the recent years, several research efforts investigated the impact of climate change on water resources for different regions of the world. The projection of future river flows is affected by different sources of uncertainty in the hydro-climatic modelling chain. One of the aims of the QBic3 project (Québec-Bavarian International Collaboration on Climate Change) is to assess the contribution to uncertainty of hydrological models by using an ensemble of hydrological models presenting a diversity of structural complexity (i.e. lumped, semi distributed and distributed models). The study investigates two humid, mid-latitude catchments with natural flow conditions; one located in Southern Québec (Canada) and one in Southern Bavaria (Germany). Daily flow is simulated with four different hydrological models, forced by outputs from regional climate models driven by a given number of GCMs' members over a reference (1971–2000) and a future (2041–2070) periods. The results show that the choice of the hydrological model does strongly affect the climate change response of selected hydrological indicators, especially those related to low flows. Indicators related to high flows seem less sensitive on the choice of the hydrological model. Therefore, the computationally less demanding models (usually simple, lumped and conceptual) give a significant level of trust for high and overall mean flows.
Hydrological response to climate change in the Lesse and the Vesdre catchments: contribution of a physically based model (Wallonia, Belgium)
A. Bauwens, C. Sohier,A. Degré
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences (HESS) & Discussions (HESSD) , 2011,
Abstract: The Meuse is an important rain-fed river in North-Western Europe. Nine million people live in its catchment, split over five countries. Projected changes in precipitation and temperature characteristics due to climate change would have a significant impact on the Meuse River and its tributaries. In this study, we focused on the impacts of climate change on the hydrology of two sub-catchments of the Meuse in Belgium, the Lesse and the Vesdre, placing the emphasis on the water-soil-plant continuum in order to highlight the effects of climate change on plant growth, and water uptake on the hydrology of two sub-catchments. These effects were studied using two climate scenarios and a physically based distributed model, which reflects the water-soil-plant continuum. Our results show that the vegetation will evapotranspirate between 10 and 17 % less at the end of the century because of water scarcity in summer, even if the root development is better under climate change conditions. In the low scenario, the mean minimal 7 days discharge value could decrease between 19 and 24 % for a two year return period, and between 20 and 35 % for a fifty year return period. It will lead to rare but severe drought in rivers, with potentially huge consequences on water quality.
The Contribution of Managed and Unmanaged Forests to Climate Change Mitigation—A Model Approach at Stand Level for the Main Tree Species in Bavaria  [PDF]
Daniel Klein,Sebastian H?llerl,Markus Blaschke,Christoph Schulz
Forests , 2013, DOI: 10.3390/f4010043
Abstract: Forestry-based carbon sequestration projects demand a comprehensive quantification of the different climate change mitigation effects. In our study, we modeled a life cycle of managed pure stands consisting of the four main tree species in Bavaria (spruce, pine, beech and oak). For spruce and beech, an unmanaged stand was additionally integrated in order to analyze the differences in climate change mitigation effects compared to the managed stands. We developed a climate change mitigation model, where stand development and silvicultural treatments including harvested timber volumes were conducted using the tree growth model Silva 2.3. The harvested wood products (HWP), including their substitution effects were calculated with a subsequent model. For unmanaged beech forests, we compiled measured data from the literature, and Bavarian strict forest reserves for validating our model results. The results for the managed stands reveal that spruce provides the highest total climate change mitigation effects. After a simulation period of 180 years, one hectare leads to a mean mitigation benefit of 13.5 Mg CO 2 ha ? 1 year ?1. In comparison, results for pine, beech and oak reveal lesser benefits with 10.1 Mg CO 2 ha ?1 year ?1, 9.1 Mg CO 2 ha ?1 year ?1 and 7.2 Mg CO 2 ha ?1 year ?1, respectively. However, these results assume current growing conditions. Considering climate change, it is very likely that spruce will not be suitable in several regions of Bavaria in the future. Furthermore, excessive disturbances could affect spruce more drastically than the other tree species. In that case, the order could change and beech could exceed spruce. Thus the results cannot be seen as a general recommendation to establish spruce stands in order to achieve optimal climate change mitigation benefits. Nevertheless, results for spruce illustrate that high increment and especially wood use in long-lived products is crucial for high climate change mitigation effects. Mitigation effects in unmanaged spruce and beech stands do not differ in the first decades from their managed counterparts, but are below them in the long term with a total climate change mitigation benefit of 8.0 Mg CO 2 ha ?1 year ?1 and 7.2 Mg CO 2 ha ?1 year ?1, respectively. These differences are mainly caused by the missing substitution effects in the unmanaged stands. However, the precise dimensions of substitution effects still remain uncertain and the lack of data should be reduced via additional life cycle assessments for more products and product classes. However, neglecting substitution effects in
An Integrated Contribution Approach Focusing on Technology for Climate Change Mitigation and Promotion of International Technology Cooperation and Transfer  [PDF]
Kanako Tanaka, Ryuji Matsuhashi, Koichi Yamada
Low Carbon Economy (LCE) , 2016, DOI: 10.4236/lce.2016.72008
Abstract: Various technologies exist for climate change mitigation. Technology transfer is important for the efficient use of these technologies globally. Such transfer/cooperation should be implemented, at sector basis, broadly and unlimitedly beyond conventional framework. In this paper, an Integrated Contribution Approach is proposed as a domestic as well as a global strategy. This approach unifies two approaches: seeking ways to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, further improve technical capabilities and encourage technical innovation; and implementing technology transfer effectively, clarifying contributions and promoting efforts to achieve substantial global GHG reduction. As an illustration, this paper estimated the technical potential of solar generation in the developing world by the year 2020, considering current and anticipated technology development. The estimate suggests a huge possibility for CO2 reduction as well as business opportunities through worldwide technology cooperation based on recognition of the importance of continual technology development. To achieve such goals, a scheme promoting incentives for private investment is indispensable as it is essential to use economic forces as well as government policy. This paper describes the following considerations: establishing a simple, easy-to-access scheme that can concentrate private resources on technology transfer; clarifying reduction efforts through measuring, reporting, and verification (MRV); applying it to conditionality together with financial and/or economic internal rate of return (FIRR, EIRR); and establishing a database and analysing data on the technical contributions and dissemination
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