Title: Countries’ contributions to climate change: effect of accounting for all greenhouse gases, recent trends, basic needs and technological progress
Citation: CLIMATIC CHANGE vol. 121 no. 2 p. 397–412
Publisher: SPRINGER
Publication Year: 2013
JRC N°: JRC80243
ISSN: 0165-0009
URI: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10584-013-0865-6
DOI: 10.1007/s10584-013-0865-6
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: . Recent discussions at the UN climate negotiations for a new agreement have shown renewed interest in the issue of contribution of countries to present climate change given their past greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This study compiled several ways of accounting historical emissions of all GHG of countries for the period 1890–2010, and assessed changes in their relative contribution to cumulative global emissions. Contributions vary significantly based on the choices made in the calculation. As example, the share of developed countries can be almost 4/5 (when excluding non-CO2, LULUCF and recent emissions) to around only 1/2 (when discounting for technological change). Excluding land-use change and forestry CO2 and non-CO2 GHGs changes relative historical contributions for many countries (changes with a factor 0.2 up to 1.5). Excluding 2000–2010 emissions decreases the contribution for emerging economies (a factor 0.8). Accounting for the effect of technological progress by discounting historical emissions would reduce contributions of some developed countries (factor of 0.8) and increase those of some developing countries (a factor of 1.2 to 1.5). When including emissions up to 2020, using the national unconditional emission reduction proposals for 2020 further increases the contributions for emerging economies up to a factor 1.2 and to 1.5 when discounting pre-2020 emissions for technological progress.
JRC Directorate:Sustainable Resources

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