Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rio+20: Climate protection and poverty reduction both depend on a new global treaty

05.06.2012
The Rio+20 summit could help pave the way towards a new global accord that links the crucial issues of climate protection and prosperity.
“If the world wants to mitigate dangerous climate change, the discussions in Rio have to go beyond the very broad sustainability issue and the very narrow green growth notion,” says Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), who is going to attend the summit.

Scientists of PIK and the Institute for Social and Development Studies (IGP), together with the organization for development cooperation Misereor and the Munich Re Foundation, point out key options for linking climate and development policy in a new book now published. It provides scientific input for the runup to Rio+20 and provides pathways to solve the climate change challenge in a fair way.

“As climate policy currently seems stuck in paralysis, science might bring the impulse to recreate momentum,” Schellnhuber says. “Raising awareness about the planetary boundaries and providing options to tackle global warming are key to finding sustainable development pathways and greening the millennium goals.” To this end, Schellnhuber will be co-chairing an interdisciplinary Nobel Laureates Panel in Rio.

While the policy target to limit global warming to less than 2°C above pre-industrial levels has become an important reference point in the international climate policy arena, a suitable policy framework for achieving this target is still under debate. The new book develops such a framework, but also looks at costs and risks. Today, “the atmosphere has to be seen as a global common – so its management is an economic challenge, but also a crucial matter of global justice,” says Ottmar Edenhofer, chief economist of PIK. “While socio-economic development up to now has been closely coupled to emission increases, we try to show that a new growth path is possible.”

The much applauded concept of green growth alone will not be sufficient, says Edenhofer. It needs to be complemented by a global policy framework of binding emission reductions which sets long-term incentives for investments. Edenhofer and his co-authors in their book outline a post-2012 treaty. It involves a global cap-and-trade scheme for emission allowances, public support for technology transfer to developing countries, measures including payments to reduce emissions from deforestation, and financial support for adaptation in least developed countries.

“Poor people are especially vulnerable to climate change,“ Thomas Loster of Munich Re Foundation says. “Since 1980, more than 80% of the people killed by weather extremes lived in developing countries, our data shows.” To increase the resilience of populations hit by climate-change-related droughts or floods, he argues, microinsurance for instance offers an opportunity to deal with shocks. “So financial instruments could be an important part of adaptation,” he says. “But a new risk perception is needed - both locally and globally.”

“The fight against poverty and against climate change will be won – or lost – together,” says Bernd Bornhorst of Misereor. As an organization for development cooperation, “we see in our daily work how development in poor countries is closely linked to combating global warming.” The new book “provides both glasses for the short-sighted and a map indicating ways towards sustainable development,” he says. But what is known about the preparations for Rio+20 in many states “raises doubts that those gathering in Brazil are really willing to turn towards sustainability.”

“With an appropriate design and implementation, the post-2012 treaty we propose in the book could also support the poor,” Johannes Müller of IGP points out. “The outcome in terms of climate change mitigation, adaptation, and sustainable development would be effective, efficient, and equitable.”

Book: Edenhofer, O.; Wallacher, J.; Lotze-Campen, H.; Reder, M.; Knopf, B.; Müller, J. (Eds.): Climate Change, Justice and Sustainability – Linking Climate and Development Policy. Springer, June 2012, ISBN 978-94-007-4539-1

Weblink to book:
http://www.springer.com/earth+sciences+and+geography/earth+system+sciences/
book/978-94-007-4539-1

For further information please contact:
PIK press office
Phone: +49 331 288 25 07
E-Mail: press@pik-potsdam.de

Mareike Schodder | PIK Potsdam
Further information:
http://www.pik-potsdam.de

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht New measure for the wellbeing of populations could replace Human Development Index
07.11.2018 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht Because not only arguments count
30.10.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Mathematik in den Naturwissenschaften (MPIMIS)

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The geometry of an electron determined for the first time

Physicists at the University of Basel are able to show for the first time how a single electron looks in an artificial atom. A newly developed method enables them to show the probability of an electron being present in a space. This allows improved control of electron spins, which could serve as the smallest information unit in a future quantum computer. The experiments were published in Physical Review Letters and the related theory in Physical Review B.

The spin of an electron is a promising candidate for use as the smallest information unit (qubit) of a quantum computer. Controlling and switching this spin or...

Im Focus: Self-repairing batteries

UTokyo engineers develop a way to create high-capacity long-life batteries

Engineers at the University of Tokyo continually pioneer new ways to improve battery technology. Professor Atsuo Yamada and his team recently developed a...

Im Focus: Quantum Cloud Computing with Self-Check

With a quantum coprocessor in the cloud, physicists from Innsbruck, Austria, open the door to the simulation of previously unsolvable problems in chemistry, materials research or high-energy physics. The research groups led by Rainer Blatt and Peter Zoller report in the journal Nature how they simulated particle physics phenomena on 20 quantum bits and how the quantum simulator self-verified the result for the first time.

Many scientists are currently working on investigating how quantum advantage can be exploited on hardware already available today. Three years ago, physicists...

Im Focus: Accelerating quantum technologies with materials processing at the atomic scale

'Quantum technologies' utilise the unique phenomena of quantum superposition and entanglement to encode and process information, with potentially profound benefits to a wide range of information technologies from communications to sensing and computing.

However a major challenge in developing these technologies is that the quantum phenomena are very fragile, and only a handful of physical systems have been...

Im Focus: A step towards probabilistic computing

Working group led by physicist Professor Ulrich Nowak at the University of Konstanz, in collaboration with a team of physicists from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz, demonstrates how skyrmions can be used for the computer concepts of the future

When it comes to performing a calculation destined to arrive at an exact result, humans are hopelessly inferior to the computer. In other areas, humans are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

SEMANTiCS 2019 brings together industry leaders and data scientists in Karlsruhe

29.04.2019 | Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Plumbene, graphene's latest cousin, realized on the 'nano water cube'

23.05.2019 | Materials Sciences

New flatland material: Physicists obtain quasi-2D gold

23.05.2019 | Materials Sciences

New Boost for ToCoTronics

23.05.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>