This page contains all the sources and more information about my lecture at the ETH from November 27, 2019.
The video is here: http://www.video.ethz.ch/events/2019/nordborg
A PDF-Version of the presentation is available here:
A huge thanks to Patrick Chappatte and Chris Madden for allowing me to use their cartoons.
Slide 1: Intro
The cartoon of a man devouring the Earth was provided by Chris Madden.
Slide 2: What do we tell our children?
The quote is from “The Jungle” by Upton Sinclair .
Slide 4: Exxon 1982 – It was never about science
I published this story on my blog: https://nordborg.ch/2018/09/29/exxon-was-right. It was based on an article in The Guardian. I simply added actual temperatures to the plot to show that the trend is reasonably correct.
Slide 5: The Keeling curve – CO2 in the atmosphere
The data for the Keeling curve is publicly available from the Scripps Center of Oceanography. The site contains a lot of useful information. The inspiration to the plot came from the Open Mind Blog. and the analysis and visualization was done in Matlab.
Slide 6: CO2 increase caused by emissions
In addition to the Keeling data, the plot uses data on global carbon dioxide emissions from BP Statistical Review of World Energy.
Slide 7: What about risk?
The IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C gives the following numbers for the CO2 budget at the start of 2018:
The budgets decrease by roughly 40 Gt annually. Using the differences between these two budgets to estimate the the standard deviation, we obtain σ = 370 Gt. A 95% probability corresponds to 1.28 σ or 610 Gt, which significantly exceeds the remaining carbon budget.
Slide 8: IPCC emission paths
The graph of the emission scenarios is taken from:
Fuss, Sabine; Canadell, Josep G.; Peters, Glen P.; Tavoni, Massimo; Andrew, Robbie M.; Ciais, Philippe et al. (2014): Betting on negative emissions. In: Nature Climate change 4 (10), S. 850–853. DOI: 10.1038/nclimate2392.
The latest United Nations report can be found here: Press Release.
Slide 9: Where are we heading?
The diagram with emission pathways compatible with 1.5 degrees is from IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C
IPCC, 2018: Summary for Policymakers. In: Global Warming of 1.5°C. An IPCC Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty [Masson-Delmotte, V., P. Zhai, H.-O. Pörtner, D. Roberts, J. Skea, P.R. Shukla, A. Pirani, W. Moufouma-Okia, C. Péan, R. Pidcock, S. Connors, J.B.R. Matthews, Y. Chen, X. Zhou, M.I. Gomis, E. Lonnoy, T. Maycock, M. Tignor, and T. Waterfield (eds.)]. World Meteorological Organization, Geneva, Switzerland, 32 pp.
The forecasts from BP are taken from the BP Energy Outlook:
Slide 10: BP: An Unsustainable Path
Press release from BP:
Slide 11: BP Statistical Review of World Energy
Speech given by Spencer Dale, BP group chief economist
Slide 12: Climate Crisis!
There is no lack of books, newspaper articles and research papers describing the climate crisis. Here is a short list of references:
- David Wallace-Wells, The Uninhabitable Earth: A Story of the Future.
- Jonathan Franzen, What If We Stopped Pretending, The New Yorker.
Slide 14: The Economist – Unburnable Fuel
The article by the economist can be found here: https://www.economist.com/business/2013/05/04/unburnable-fuel.
A very important article, which introduced the idea of the carbon budget, was written by Bill McKibben and published by the Rolling Stone Magazine in 2012:
Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math, RollingStone, July 19, 2012.
Slide 15: The Solution?
Donald Trump has received enough media attention.
Slide 16: Global Energy Consumption
Data copied from BP Statistical Review of World Energy.
Slide 17: The World Economy is Driven by Fossil Fuel
GDP data from the World Bank: data.worldbank.org.
CO2 data from carbonbrief.org:
Slide 18 & 19: GDP And CO2: Current Policies
Using the same data as above.
Slide 20: Is Decoupling possible? – Exhibit A
Isaksen, Elisabeth T.; Narbel, Patrick A. (2017): A carbon footprint proportional to expenditure – A case for Norway? In: Ecological Economics 131, S. 152–165. DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2016.08.027.
Slide 21: Is Decoupling possible? – Exhibit B
Ward, James D.; Sutton, Paul C.; Werner, Adrian D.; Costanza, Robert; Mohr, Steve H.; Simmons, Craig T. (2016): Is Decoupling GDP Growth from Environmental Impact Possible? In: PloS one 11 (10), e0164733. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0164733.
Slide 22: Is Decoupling possible? – Exhibit C
Hickel, Jason (2019): The contradiction of the sustainable development goals: Growth versus ecology on a finite planet. In: Sustainable Development 145 (6), S. 10. DOI: 10.1002/sd.1947.
Slide 23: The need for Degrowth – a simple proof
References are not required, as the argument is obvious. There are many different estimates of the payback time in the liteture.