[Seminar on Dec. 28] Climate targets to limit climate change


Dr. Chao Li

Max-Planck Institute for Meteorology, Germany

Room 303, Keyan Building

9:30am, Dec. 28, 2017 



In the Paris Agreement, the goal of keeping surface warming well below 2.0°C and pursuing efforts to limit surface warming to 1.5°C has been widely adopted by most countries. However, it is unclear whether 1.5°C target could significantly reduce the climate risk as a result of 2.0°C surface warming. In our recent study, using the 100-member MPI-ESM Grand Ensemble, we found that 1.5°C target could reduce the appearance of extreme summer temperature in some extent, but the temperature extreme could be strongly influenced by internal variability. The second issue in my talk is an alternative climate target of limit global sea-level rise instead of limiting surface warming. Pervious studies have shown that limiting surface warming is insufficient to limit long-term sea-level rise because of the thermal inertial in the climate system. In our study, we have substantially augmented the climate physics of the optimizing climate-energy-economy model MIND, allowing for a much improved represented of ocean heat uptake and a connection between surface warming and land-ice melting. This has enabled us to investigate, for the first time, a sea-level rise climate target in an integrated-assessment framework, a target that is closer to society's vulnerabilities than a global temperature target would be. 

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