ABC 24 TV Interview with Climate & Energy College Director
Global-mean surface temperatures soared February 2016. ABC24 TV interviews A/Prof. Malte Meinshausen. The interview is in part a reaction to the Q&A discussion the day before, in which Australia's chief scientist Prof. Alan Finkel said that we are loosing the battle against climate change. . @DrEmmaLJohnston says we are in a severe bleaching event in the GBR @ScienceChiefAu says we're losing...
Business Models as Drivers of the Low Carbon Power System Transition: A Multi-Level Perspective
Authors : Martin E. Wainstein and Adam G. Bumpus Abstract : Decarbonising the electrical power system holds a critical role in climate change mitigation. Recent developments in technology are helping change the current centralized paradigm into one of integrated distributed clean energy resources. In spite of these developments, radical transformation is not occurring at a speed to effectively...
Modelling the influence of soil carbon on net greenhouse gas emissions from grazed pastures
Authors : Rachelle Meyer, Brendan R. Cullen, and Richard J., Eckard Abstract : Sequestering carbon (C) in soil organic matter in grassland systems is often cited as a major opportunity to offset greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. However, these systems are typically grazed by ruminants, leading to uncertainties in the net GHG balance that may be achieved. We used a pasture model to investigate the...
HISTORICAL GREENHOUSE GAS CONCENTRATIONS FOR CMIP6 Meinshausen, M., Vogel, E., Nauels, A., Lorbacher, K., Meinshausen, N., Etheridge, D. M., Fraser, P. J., Montzka, S. A., Rayner, P. J., Trudinger, C. M., Krummel, P. B., Beyerle, U., Canadell, J. G., Daniel, J. S., Enting, I. G., Law, R. M., Lunder, C. R., O'Doherty, S., Prinn, R. G., Reimann, S., Rubino, M., Velders, G. J. M., Vollmer, M. K.,...
Facts4COP21: Paris Agreement includes ambitious long-term goal
The Paris Agreement writes history. The Agreement strenghtens the temperature goal from "below 2°C" to "well below 2°C" and to pursue best efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C. Less in the headlines, but of equal importance is the translation to emission goals. Article 4 is the crucial one in regard to emissions. It says that "In order to achieve the long-term temperature goal set out in Article 2,...
Facts4COP21: Coal is yesterday's hero
If we want a reasonable chance of staying within 2°C, we can't build any more coal-fired power plants. New analysis of coal power plant data by CoalSwarm (see their Coal Plant Tracker here ) in collaboration with the ClimateActionTracker.org team shows that the carbon budget leaves no room for new coal power plants. The report looked at IPCC AR5 scenarios that allow a chance of staying below 2°C...
Facts4COP21: Carbon price average is $7/t while consumption subsidy average is $115/t
The IEA Special World Energy Outlook Report 2015 on Energy and Climate Change contains a number of interesting points. On page 24, Figure 1.2 illustrates for selected regions: the volume of energy-related CO 2 emissions; the percentage of energy-related CO 2 emissions that are covered by a carbon price; and the percentage of energy-related CO 2 emissions that are covered by end-use consumption...
Facts4COP21: Global LULUCF emissions now zero and promise to stay that way.
Time for some motivating news... Globally aggregated land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) emissions and removals have come down substantially over the last years. In 2010, LULUCF emissions were around zero. Although it should be noted that this might be a little deceptive because countries account for the removal of CO 2 in forest management systems and elsewhere, whereas carbon cycle...
Facts4COP21: 95% of the world covered by INDCs... Outstanding: 2% countries, 3% bunkers.
At the start of COP21, 182 countries had announced post-2020 INDCs:155 INDCs, one of which covers 28 EU countries. Jointly, these 182 countries are responsible for more than 95% of global greenhouse gas emissions in 2010. So which countries make up the missing 5%? 2% of the remaining 5% are a handful of countries: Angola , Brunei Darussalam, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Libya, Nepal,...
Facts4COP21: The current 'optimistic' case shows a G20 emissions 'plateau'
As we start COP21 negotiations in Paris today, we wanted to provide a good news story. Taking all G20 INDC targets, we calculated an emissions trajectory to 2030 for G20 countries. In most cases an INDC does not provide a straight-forward target, but a range. This is either by design (such as for Australia where the announced target is 26% to 28% below 2005 levels) or because of unavoidable...
Facts4COP21: Inflated baselines make some INDCs seem more ambitious
For developing countries, INDC targets are often expressed as reductions with respect to projected business-as-usual (BAU) emissions. That is, these countries intend to reduce their emissions compared to what would have happened under a scenario of 'no climate policy'. In these circumstances, the chosen BAU projection is highly relevant. In some INDCs, the BAU is explicitly stated, in others it...
Facts4COP21: Russia and Turkey producing most of the 'hot air' in climate talks
Where a country announces an emissions target that sounds like a reduction but actually results in more emissions than under a business-as-usual situation, the emissions are known as 'hot air'. For all countries, we compared business-as-usual projections of emissions with announced 2030 INDC targets. In every case, where the target was a range (either by design or because of inherent uncertainty...
Flexible electricity tariffs: Power and energy price signals designed for a smarter grid
Authors : Michael Schreiber, Martin E. Wainstein, Patrick Hochloff, Roger Dargaville Abstract : Renewable energy is increasingly replacing carbon-based technologies worldwide in electricity networks. This increases the challenge of balancing intermittent generation with demand fluctuation. DR (Demand response) is recognized as a way to address this by adapting consumption to supply patterns. By...
Facts4COP21: INDCs exist for 161 countries responsible for 92% of emissions
We have updated our INDC Factsheets webpage with the latest submissions (the most recent addition being that of Saudi Arabia). As of 17 November 2015, 161 countries responsible for 92% of global emissions have submitted INDCs. Those countries account for 93% of the global population and 97% of global GDP. However, not every INDC covers 100% of a country's national emissions, some exclude certain...
Facts4COP21: Adaptation financing according to consumption-based emissions: taxing air tickets a close proxy.
According to a recent study by French economists Chancel and Piketti (author of Capital in the 21st century ) taxing air tickets to raise adaptation finance would be easy to implement but may not hit the highest emitters most effectively. Other options might do a better job of this, like focussing on consumption-based emissions and taking contributions from countries whose individuals emit above...
Facts4COP21: Multi-study comparison confirms that global emissions heading in the wrong direction from 2025 to 2030.
The World Resources Institute has collated and compared all the main global studies that quantify INDCs. Although there is a fair spread across the individual studies—many providing INDC ranges with low and high values, as well as conditional and unconditional quantifications— there is one trend that is clear across the board. If INDCs are implemented as they are currently stand, emission levels...
Facts4Paris: Australia could meet its Kyoto pledge while increasing emissions 11% by 2020 relative to 2000.
The near-term Australian target is a reduction of 5% on 2000 levels by 2020...or so most Australians believe. In reality the target was established in three parts: an unconditional 5% target; increased to a 15% target if there is a commitment from major developing economies to substantially reduce emissions and for advanced economies to take on comparable commitments; increased to a 25% target if...
Facts4Paris: Lomborg. Wrong again.
Reported in The Australian today ( Paris pledges ‘wishful thinking, not optimism’: Bjorn Lomborg ), climate dissident Bjorn Lomborg has published findings suggesting that the Paris agreement will reduce global mean temperatures in 2100 by only 0.17°C. To make this finding he used the climate model that we co-developed: MAGICC , so we know it well. The thing about climate models, in fact any...
Ocean acidification: the forgotten piece of the carbon puzzle
Originally published on The Conversation, November 10, 2015 6.20am AEDT https://theconversation.com/ocean-acidification-the-forgotten-piece-of-the-carbon-puzzle-50247 Ocean acidification – the rise in ocean acidity due to the increased absorption of carbon dioxide (CO₂) – is often thought of as consequence of climate change. However, it is actually a separate, albeit very closely-related problem...
Web tools and Projects we developed
The live tracker of the Australian electricity market.
This website is based on a Nature Climate Change study that compares Nationally Determined Contributions with equitable national emissions trajectories in line with the five categories of equity outlined by the IPCC.
Run one of the most popular reduced-complexity climate carbon cycle models online. Used by IPCC, UNEP GAP reports and numerous scientific publications.
Check out our analysis of all the post-2020 targets that countries announced under the Paris Agreement.