Navigation Links
Climate policies can help resolve energy security and air pollution challenges
Date:11/14/2011

Policies to protect the global climate and limit global temperature rise offer the most effective entry point for achieving energy sustainability, reducing air pollution, and improving energy security, according to an article published in the latest issue of Nature Climate Change (Vol 1 Dec 2011). By adopting an integrated perspective on energy and climate policy, one that simultaneously addresses three of the key objectives for energy sustainability, major synergies and cost co-benefits can be realized.

The article, written by scientists at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), Austria, finds that policies focusing on mitigating climate change have synergistic effects in other dimensions, as they necessarily involve massive improvements in energy efficiency and the rapid and widespread deployment of clean, secure energy sources, in particular renewables.

"A clear advantage of pursuing ambitious climate policies is that, in general, many of the technologies and clean fuels that they will motivate, will simultaneously reduce both carbon emissions and a suite of other air pollutants that are harmful to the health of humans and the environment," says lead author David McCollum of IIASA.

"Moreover, once stringent climate policies are in place, our calculations show some strong synergies. The additional costs of supplementary policies to achieve the air pollution and energy objectives are significantly reduced by several hundred billion dollars per year globally, or approximately one-half of one per cent of global GDP." (See Figure 1).

Cost savings of this magnitude represent large financial flows according to the authors, equating to approximately one third of today's investments into the energy system, and these offsets to climate protection policy would accrue globally, every single year, for several decades into the future.

The efficiencies identified in the study are likely to be a bit conservative, according to the scientists. "We've used a partial economic accounting approach, which means we have not attempted to place an economic value on the many other co-benefits of achieving these three critical sustainability objectives, such as reduced health expenditures and increased life expectancies especially for the world's poorest reduced eutrophication and acidification damage to vegetation, or reduced fossil-fuel subsidies. Similarly the mid- to long-term avoided costs of climate change impacts and of adaptation measures have also not been quantified," states co-author Volker Krey, IIASA.

The practice of integrating sustainable energy policies within a holistic framework offers marked advantages over traditional approaches, which, because they are typically more fragmented, often ignore important policy synergies.

Leader of IIASA's Energy Program, Keywan Riahi adds that alignment of policies can be complicated due to time disparities.

"One of the difficulties for policy makers is that these issues are often viewed on very different time scales: climate change for example, is seen as a mid- to long-term issue (2030-2050 and beyond), while energy security and air pollution are viewed with near-term urgency (for the next two decades). Thus, the policies discussed for each objective fail to complement each other; or worse, they may compete for attention. When this happens, for instance, through single-minded policies for security or air pollution, the potential for synergies and co-benefits is largely lost," concludes Riahi.

As world leaders prepare to travel to Durban for the next round of UNFCCC climate talks, the authors are urging for a new lens to be cast on policy development when it comes to climate change mitigation, stating that a far deeper appreciation is needed of the multiple and far-ranging benefits of 'green growth' and, in particular, the advantage of using climate policy as a driving force for solving a host of social and environmental issues in a cost effective and sustainable way.

In reaching their conclusions, the IIASA team used an integrated assessment modeling tool with a detailed representation of the global energy system, MESSAGE, to develop a large ensemble of different 'energy-pollution-climate futures', each of which assumes a unique combination of policy priorities with respect to the three energy sustainability objectives. The MESSAGE model, which has been developed at IIASA over many years, is commonly used for medium- to long-term energy system planning, energy policy analysis, and scenario development.


'/>"/>

Contact: Leane Regan
regan@iiasa.ac.at
43-664-443-0368
International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Trees on tundras border are growing faster in a hotter climate
2. Groundbreaking study quantifies health costs of climate-change related disasters in the US
3. Report provides new analysis of carbon accounting, biomass use, and climate benefits
4. Holm oaks will gain ground in northern forests due to climate change
5. One if by land, Two if by sea? Climate change escape routes
6. New European project launched to address shortcomings in climate data
7. The human cause of climate change: Where does the burden of proof lie?
8. Climate change causing massive movement of tree species across the West
9. A fair approach to climate change
10. Maryland climate plan passes key tests in UMD studies
11. Forests not keeping pace with climate change
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/15/2016)... , June 15, 2016 ... report titled "Gesture Recognition Market by Application Market - Global Industry ... - 2024". According to the report, the  global gesture ... in 2015 and is estimated to grow at ... billion by 2024.  Increasing application of ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... Finland , June 9, 2016 ... National Police deploy Teleste,s video security solution to ensure the ... France during the major tournament ... data communications systems and services, announced today that its video ... Prefecture to back up public safety across the ...
(Date:6/3/2016)... , June 3, 2016 ... von Nepal hat ... Lieferung hochsicherer geprägter Kennzeichen, einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung ... in der Produktion und Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. ... Ausschreibung im Januar teilgenommen, aber Decatur wurde ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. ... test has received AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI ... stated Bob Salter, Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 2016 , ... STACS DNA Inc., the sample tracking software company, today announced ... has joined STACS DNA as a Field Application Specialist. , “I am thrilled ... COO of STACS DNA. “In further expanding our capacity as a scientific integrator, Hays ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 On Wednesday, June 22, ... down 0.22%; the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged 0.27% lower ... 2,085.45, down 0.17%. Stock-Callers.com has initiated coverage on the following ... Therapeutics (NASDAQ: NKTR ), Aralez Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ... BIND ). Learn more about these stocks by accessing ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... PUNE, India , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... culture media market research report to its pharmaceuticals ... company profiles, product details and much more. ... market spread across 151 pages, profiling 15 companies ... now available at http://www.reportsnreports.com/reports/601420-global-cell-culture-media-industry-2016-market-research-report.html . ...
Breaking Biology Technology: