Saturday, October 24, 2015

Global Climate Prospects

Vox has an article worth reading carefully: The math on staying below 2°C of global warming looks increasingly brutal.

With respect to India:
One possibility is that emission cuts would be divided equally among countries. The United States and Europe and China and India and Zimbabwe would all make proportionally similar sacrifices to stay below 2°C. When the dust settled, the average American would still emit more than the average Indian, but they'd each have made similar percentage cuts. The authors call this the "inertia" approach.

Another option would be to divvy up cuts so that every country has roughly the same level of per capita emissions. In this scenario, India's emissions are allowed to grow, while the US and Europe have to cut much more deeply. The authors call this the "equity" approach.
With that under your belt:
India would also have to make wrenching changes. On Twitter, Peters posted a graph comparing India's projected emissions under current policies (the purple line) with what'd be required under "inertia" or "equity" scenarios for staying below 2°C:

Given that India is currently planning to double coal production by 2020 as it lifts itself out of poverty, this looks incredibly unlikely.