Navigation Links
Cool model for a hot planet
Date:3/8/2010

BINGHAMTON, NY -- In his recent book, "Strategic Bargaining and Cooperation in Greenhouse Gas Mitigations," Binghamton University's Zili Yang suggests ways governments might realistically work together to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. He also makes a case for curbing the use of fossil fuels whether they contribute to climate change or not.

"If global warming is factually true and I'm not making a scientific judgment here then a rational government should do something," said Yang, a professor of economics. "And suppose, hypothetically, that climate change is not true. You can burn fossil fuels all you like. Sooner or later you will still run into a situation that requires you to adopt a new technology. If we use climate change as an excuse for arriving sooner at alternative energy, it does not hurt anybody."

Yang uses game theory to create a cost-benefit analysis of actions countries could take to curb global warming. His work is not political, but rather applies modeling and logic to the issue. "Advocates make the argument, sometimes without justification, and are quite emotional," he said. "My approach shows the incentive to do something."

Yang believes that the economic issues associated with climate change must be considered in tandem with the natural sciences. Researchers who work from this multidisciplinary perspective have created "integrated assessment," or IA, models, which take into account climatology, ecology, regional sciences and engineering as well as economic concerns.

There are several IA models, including an influential system that Yang had a role in developing while he was a graduate student at Yale University in the 1990s. That model, named RICE (the Regional Integrated Model of Climate and the Economy), is fairly simple and small, said Yang, who has also worked on much larger models.

Yang said he thinks a small model such as RICE is "beautiful," though the algorithm and simulation scenarios might seem complex to non-experts. "A simple model can tell more stories," he explained.

In his book, Yang takes the RICE model and brings it to bear on another hot area in economics: game theory. Game theory allows economists to examine the decision-making process in a scenario in which there are multiple people making decisions and those actions affect the other people.

Yang writes in "Strategic Bargaining and Cooperation in Greenhouse Gas Mitigations" that he observed integrated assessment and game theory as "twin peaks in economic research on climate change" unconnected by any bridge. He set out to change that, with a powerful computer and research funding from the Department of Energy.

Among the book's most important conclusions is that climate agreements cannot require too much of industrialized nations or too little from the rest of the world.

"With climate change, everybody contributes to the problem," Yang said. "Everybody emits CO2. And the environmental damage will be felt by everybody. So in that situation, it is not efficient to have only some countries shoulder the burden."

Yang's research has attracted international attention. Yang spoke last summer at a climate-change conference in Venice and spent the fall 2009 semester on sabbatical at the Universit Catholique de Louvain in Belgium.

"Zili Yang's book provides a clear explanation of important analytical tools that are crucial to understanding and analyzing a country's incentive to control climate change," said Carlo Carraro, an environmental economist who is rector of the University of Venice and was an organizer of the conference there. He added that Yang's model provided "crucial information" to policymakers who participated in the 2009 climate negotiations in Copenhagen.

Influencing such discussions is at the core of Yang's ambitions for his work.

"Fifteen years from now, from a science point of view, everything about climate change should be clear," he said. "But at that time, will human beings still be able to do something? It'll probably be too late. Now people debate whether global warming is true. What economists can do is to suggest some kind of reasonable policy approach."

Building consensus

Binghamton University economist Zili Yang was one of 21 climate-change experts invited by a Danish think-tank called the Copenhagen Consensus Center to submit papers that examine different solutions to global warming. Read his analysis, which focuses on technology transfer, at http://fixtheclimate.com


'/>"/>

Contact: Gail Glover
gglover@binghamton.edu
607-777-2174
Binghamton University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Biochemist researching computer models of protein structure that help high school, college students
2. Stem cells restore sight in mouse model of retinitis pigmentosa
3. Stress and trade-offs explain lifes diversity: New Smithsonian model
4. Animal models that help translate regenerative therapies from bench to bedside
5. First wild grass species and model system for energy crops sequenced
6. USDA scientists sequence genome of grass that can be a biofuel model crop
7. Modeling Toxoplasma focus of workshop
8. Oral COTI-2 is effective in a second animal model of human pancreatic cancer
9. Computer models suggest vaccination or culling best to prevent foot-and-mouth disease
10. Small molecules found to protect cells in multiple models of Parkinsons disease
11. Species distribution models are of only limited value for predicting future mammal distributions
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Cool model for a hot planet
(Date:6/2/2016)... --  The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: ... in which consumers will be able to interact with IBM ... voice or text and receive relevant information about the product ... have long sought an advertising solution that can create a ... and valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and ...
(Date:5/16/2016)... , May 16, 2016   EyeLock LLC ... today announced the opening of an IoT Center of ... strengthen and expand the development of embedded iris biometric ... unprecedented level of convenience and security with unmatched biometric ... one,s identity aside from DNA. EyeLock,s platform uses video ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... First quarter 2016:   , Revenues amounted ... quarter of 2015 The gross margin was 49% (27) ... the operating margin was 40% (-13) Earnings per share ... operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , Outlook   ... M. The operating margin for 2016 is estimated to ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers ... 5000 and the 6000i models are higher end machines that use the more unconventional ... spectrophotometer’s light beam from the bottom of the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...   Boston Biomedical , an industry leader ... target cancer stemness pathways, announced that its lead ... Designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration ... gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) cancer. Napabucasin is an orally ... stemness pathways by targeting STAT3, and is currently ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... Charm Sciences, Inc. is pleased to ... AOAC Research Institute approval 061601. , “This is another AOAC-RI approval of the ... Vice President of Regulatory and Industrial Affairs. “The Peel Plate methods perform comparably ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Supplyframe, the Industry Network for electronics hardware ... . Located in Pasadena, Calif., the Design Lab’s mission is to bring together ... built and brought to market. , The Design Lab is Supplyframe’s physical representation ...
Breaking Biology Technology: