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Climate Change: it’s a matter of degrees... Energy and Climate Change Symposium American Academy of Arts and Sciences Stated Meeting,, October 7, 2007.

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Presentation on theme: "Climate Change: it’s a matter of degrees... Energy and Climate Change Symposium American Academy of Arts and Sciences Stated Meeting,, October 7, 2007."— Presentation transcript:

1 Climate Change: it’s a matter of degrees... Energy and Climate Change Symposium American Academy of Arts and Sciences Stated Meeting,, October 7, 2007 Rosina Bierbaum, Dean and Professor, University of Michigan October 7, 2007

2 Take Home Messages “Degrees” of warming matter “Degrees” of warming matter Mitigation makes a differenceMitigation makes a difference Committed to further climate changes Committed to further climate changes Achieving the Millennium Development Goals becomes harderAchieving the Millennium Development Goals becomes harder Its not just the averages that matter… Its not just the averages that matter… Regional vulnerabilitiesRegional vulnerabilities Multiple stressesMultiple stresses ExtremesExtremes Portfolio Approach: Portfolio Approach: Adaptation and Mitigation---integrate and need MORE OF BOTHAdaptation and Mitigation---integrate and need MORE OF BOTH

3 Projected Impacts of Climate Change IPCC, 2007

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5 A world vulnerable to Climate Change  Most impacts are will be negative, especially for the poorest, most vulnerable nations. Achieving the MDGs will be much more difficult. Water resources, coastal infrastructure, health, agriculture, and ecosystems will be challenged in virtually every region of the globe. International, regional, and national institutions are ill-prepared to manage climate change impacts. Enhanced preparedness/response strategies are a global priority. Both Mitigation and Adaptation are needed. –A “mitigation only” strategy won’t work because it’s already too late to avoid substantial climate change. –An “adaptation only” strategy won’t work because most adaptation measures become more costly and less effective as the magnitude of the changes to which one is trying to adapt gets larger.

6 The Millennium Development Goals 1.Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger-- Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people living on less than $1/day and the proportion of people suffering from hunger. 2.Achieve Universal Primary Education 3.Promote Gender Equality & Empower Women 4.Reduce Child Mortality-- Reduce by 2/3, between 1990 and 2015, the under-5 mortality rate. 5.Improve Maternal Health-- Reduce by 3/4, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality rate 6.Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases-- By 2015 have halted and begun to reverse the spread of HIV aids and the incidence of malaria and other major diseases. 7.Ensure Environmental Sustainability 8.Develop a global partnership for Development

7 The Millennium Development Goals 1.Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger-- Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people living on less than $1/day and the proportion of people suffering from hunger. 2.Achieve Universal Primary Education 3.Promote Gender Equality & Empower Women 4.Reduce Child Mortality-- Reduce by 2/3, between 1990 and 2015, the under-5 mortality rate. 5.Improve Maternal Health-- Reduce by 3/4, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality rate 6.Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases-- By 2015 have halted and begun to reverse the spread of HIV aids and the incidence of malaria and other major diseases. 7.Ensure Environmental Sustainability 8.Develop a global partnership for Development

8 The Millennium Development Goals 1.Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger-- Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people living on less than $1/day and the proportion of people suffering from hunger. 2.Achieve Universal Primary Education 3.Promote Gender Equality & Empower Women 4.Reduce Child Mortality-- Reduce by 2/3, between 1990 and 2015, the under-5 mortality rate. 5.Improve Maternal Health-- Reduce by 3/4, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality rate 6.Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases-- By 2015 have halted and begun to reverse the spread of HIV aids and the incidence of malaria and other major diseases. 7.Ensure Environmental Sustainability 8.Develop a global partnership for Development

9 1 hour ozone (ppb)

10 Projected changes in extremes

11 Adaptation Research is Lagging NRC Report on CCSP * (9/12/07) Understanding and predicting physical climate change is progressing well Understanding and predicting physical climate change is progressing well Declining observing capability Declining observing capability Inadequate human dimensions funding: Inadequate human dimensions funding: $30 million; lack of collaboration$30 million; lack of collaboration Inadequate progress Inadequate progress in assessing impacts on human well being and vulnerabilitiesin assessing impacts on human well being and vulnerabilities in providing knowledge to support decision making and risk analysesin providing knowledge to support decision making and risk analyses in communicating results and engaging stakeholders in a two-way dialoguein communicating results and engaging stakeholders in a two-way dialogue *Evaluating Progress of the US CCSP Program: Methods & Preliminary Results

12 Adaptation options include: management, technology, institutions, monitoring, & R&D Prioritize lands to preserve Prioritize lands to preserve Design of migration corridors Design of migration corridors Infrastructure to withstand new “extremes” Infrastructure to withstand new “extremes” Linking of reservoirs to enhance supply Linking of reservoirs to enhance supply Seed banks, mass propagation techniques Seed banks, mass propagation techniques Emergency response plans Emergency response plans Early warning alert systems / surveillance Early warning alert systems / surveillance Incentives / Disincentives / insurance Incentives / Disincentives / insurance

13 Assessments should be policy-relevant, provide near-term guidance …. AND identify missing information most important to future decisions.

14 Meanwhile, climate-change science is actually being cut! Budget authority in constant FY2007$ Kei Kozumi, AAAS, 2-07

15 “So as to better inform policy, agencies should continue to make investments to improve our ability to observe, model, assess, and adapt to impacts of climate change, particularly on a regional scale, and to assure the availability of critical long-term climate data.” Among the President’s FY ’09 Priorities…. But, there is hope…..

16 US federal investment in energy-technology research, development, and demonstration US DOE energy RD&D spending, FY Courtesy Kelly Gallagher, Kennedy School of Gov’t,

17 U.S. emissions trajectories to 2050 ASES, January 2007 Old Proverb: It is easier to close the jaws of an alligator when they are small.

18 Electric Power Research Institute, 2007 There are intersections between mitigation and adaptation… and water is a linchpin ….

19 Wise integrated mitigation-adaptation strategies needed! –Sustainable land and water use policies are vital for agriculture, forestry, energy production and biodiversity preservation –Advanced building designs can maximize energy efficiency & improve indoor air quality –Renewable energy sources can be a new income source (biomass/wind) –infrastructure can be constructed to withstand increasing floods and storm surges and with more efficient resource use

20 Conclusions Past is not prologue… Past is not prologue… Infrastructure, energy and natural resource management and planning based on the last 100 years of climate will be wrongInfrastructure, energy and natural resource management and planning based on the last 100 years of climate will be wrong Adaptive Management will be needed Adaptive Management will be needed In all sectors and regions to cope with changing averages, extremes, and composite stressesIn all sectors and regions to cope with changing averages, extremes, and composite stresses Investment is not commensurate with the urgency of the problem… Investment is not commensurate with the urgency of the problem… Need integrative science assessments and serious RD&D in mitigation and adaptationNeed integrative science assessments and serious RD&D in mitigation and adaptation

21 Some key references: Confronting Climate Change: Avoiding the Unmanageable and Managing the Unavoidable, United Nations Foundation, February “Climate Change 2007”, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,2000 Climate Change Impacts on the United States: The Potential Consequences of Climate Variability and Change view.htmttp://www.usgcrp.gov/usgcrp/Library/nationalassessment/over view.htm Preparing for an Uncertain Climate, OTA, 1993, Vols. 1&2

22 The Challenge: Sustainable Management of an Ever-Changing Planet


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