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Climate feedbacks - the connectivity of the positive ice/snow albedo feedback, terrestrial snow and vegetation feedbacks and the negative cloud/radiation feedback Climate feedbacks - the connectivity of the positive ice/snow albedo feedback, terrestrial snow and vegetation feedbacks and the negative cloud/radiation feedback
Feedback refers to the modification of a process by changes resulting from the process itself. Positive feedbacks accelerate the process, while negative feedbacks slow it down. Part of the uncertainty around future climates relates to important feedbacks between different parts of the climate system: air temperatures, ice and snow albedo (reflection of the sun’s rays), and clouds. An important positive feedback is the ice and snow albedo feedback...
01 Jun 2007 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Projections to 2020 of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions Projections to 2020 of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions
The graphic shows emissions of anthropogenic greenhouse gases from 1990 to 1995, with projections to 2020. The main greenhouse gases are CO2, CH4, N2O, HFCs, PFCs and SF6. GLobal warming is largely believed to be the result of emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities including industrial processes, fossil fuel combustion, and changes in land use, such as deforestation.
06 Nov 2006 - by Emmanuelle Bournay, Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Kyoto protocol, cost of implementation Kyoto protocol, cost of implementation
The Kyoto Protocol is only a first step towards combating climate change. Drastic reductions of greenhouse gas emissions are required to avoid the most threatening consequences of global warming. Concerns are raised that the price for the economy will be too high, but studies indicate that there will only be a small reduction in GDP to reach the Kyoto targets and that it is possible to stabilize the concentration of CO2 at low costs. The GDP los...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Mitigating climate change: cost in 2050 (out of GDP) Mitigating climate change: cost in 2050 (out of GDP)
Global average GDP might be reduced by 1–4% if we reduce the emissions of CO2 so that we stabilize the concentration in the atmosphere at 450 ppmv. In 2003 the concentration was 375 ppmv. If we stabilise at higher concentration levels, the GDP reduction will be less. The projected mitigation scenarios do not take into account potential benefits of avoided climate change. Cost-effectiveness studies with a century time scale estimate that the mit...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Energy consumption, economic development and CO2 emissions; selected Latin America countries Energy consumption, economic development and CO2 emissions; selected Latin America countries
As a rule of thumb, economic growth is closely related to growth in energy consumption because the more energy is used, the higher the economic growth. However, it is possible to decouple energy consumption and economic growth to some extent.. More efficient use of energy may entail economic growth and a reduction in energy use. Energy efficiency may very well be an economic driving force. With an increasing use of sustainable energy sources, th...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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CH4 emissions in 2000; Latin America and selected countries CH4 emissions in 2000; Latin America and selected countries
Since pre-industrial times, the atmospheric concentration of methane (CH4) has increased by 150%. Methane is a greenhouse gas that has a global warming potential that is 23 times stronger than CO2. (IPCC 2001) In 2000 the total world CH4 emissions was estimated at 6,000 million tonnes of CO2equivalents. In South America the emissions of CH4 per capita is almost twice the world average, while the per capita emissions in Central America and Caribb...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Change in precipitation for scenarios A2 and B2; Tropical America Change in precipitation for scenarios A2 and B2; Tropical America
When global surface temperatures increase, changes in precipitation and atmospheric moisture are very likely to increase: the hydrological cycle will be more active, and the atmosphere will increase its water holding capacity. Atmospheric water vapour is a climatically critical greenhouse gas, and more of it leads to a stronger greenhouse effect through natural feedback systems. As a rule of thumb, precipitation will increase in areas that alre...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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CO2 emissions in the world and in Latin America and the Caribbean CO2 emissions in the world and in Latin America and the Caribbean
A comparison between the amount of CO2 emissions of the world and latin America and the Caribbean. Since pre-industrial times, the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases has grown significantly. The present level of carbon dioxide concentration (around 375 parts per million) is the highest for 420,000 years, and probably the highest for the past 20 million years. CO2 is the greenhouse gas that contributes most to the enhanced greenhouse e...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Tropical hydropower dams as greenhouse sources Tropical hydropower dams as greenhouse sources
Large tropical hydropower reservoirs in Latin America may have a potential adverse impact on the climatic system through releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Submerging large areas of land and tropical vegetation under water and fluctuations in water level promote physical-chemical processes that decompose the organic matter and generate methane and carbon dioxide emissions. In the initial years of operation, emission levels are especi...
17 May 2005 - by Viktor Novikov, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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CO2 emissions per person in Latin America and the Caribbean compared to the world and OECD average emissions CO2 emissions per person in Latin America and the Caribbean compared to the world and OECD average emissions
Emissions of greenhouse gases are on the increase around the world, contributing to man-made global warming and climate change. This graphic displays greenhouse gas emissions per capita in Latin America and the Caribbean compared to countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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N2O emissions in 2000; Latin America and selected countries N2O emissions in 2000; Latin America and selected countries
Since pre-industrial times, the atmospheric concentration of nitrous oxide (N2O) has increased by 16%. Nitrous oxide is a greenhouse gas that has a global warming potential that is 296 times stronger than CO2. In 2000 the total world N2O emissions were estimated at 3,400 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents. In South America the emissions of N2O per capita was almost twice the world average, while the emissions of N2O per capita emissions in Centra...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Sea level rise due to the melting of mountain and subpolar glaciers Sea level rise due to the melting of mountain and subpolar glaciers
Oceans change as a result of the impact of climatic variability on glaciers and ice caps that further contributes to fluctuation sin sea leve. Observational and modelling studies of glaciers and ice caps indicate an average sea level increase of 0.2 to 0.4 mm/yr during the 20th century. Since the Last Glacial Maximum about 20,000 years ago, sea level has risen by over 120 m at locations far from present and former ice sheets, as a result of los...
17 May 2005 - by UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Cooling factors Cooling factors
The amount of aerosols in the air has direct effect on the amount of solar radiation hitting the Earth's surface. Aerosols may have significant local or regional impact on temperature. Water vapour is a greenhouse gas, but at the same time the upper white surface of clouds reflects solar radiation back into space. Albedo - reflections of solar radiation from surfaces on the Earth - creates difficulties in exact calculations. If e.g. the polar ice...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Sources of greenhouse gases Sources of greenhouse gases
Shows the sources for greenhouse gases, contributing to climate change, and their relative radiative forcing effect (radiative forcing is the change in the balance between radiation coming into the atmosphere and radiation going out)
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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UN Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) UN Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Convention is the foundation of global efforts to combat global warming. Opened for signature in 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit, its ultimate objective is the 'stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic human-induced interference with the climate system. The Convention's supreme body is the Conference of the Parties (COP)...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Estimated Loss of Rainfall in Amazonia in the Next Century Estimated Loss of Rainfall in Amazonia in the Next Century
The synthesis of 23 climate models shows a decline in rainfall between 1980-1999 and 2080-2099 under mid- range (A1B) global greenhouse gas emissions scenarios. The dry season rainfall is particularly important (winter in north and summer in central and southern Amazonia).
20 Jun 2009 - by Philippe Rekacewicz assisted by Cecile Marin, Agnes Stienne, Guilio Frigieri, Riccardo Pravettoni, Laura Margueritte and Marion Lecoquierre.
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Contribution of various waste management systems to greenhouse gas emissions, 2002 Contribution of various waste management systems to greenhouse gas emissions, 2002
The disposal and treatment of waste can produce emissions of several greenhouse gases (GHGs), which contribute to global climate change. The most significant GHG gas produced from waste is methane. It is released during the breakdown of organic matter in landfills. Other forms of waste disposal also produce GHGs but these are mainly in the form of carbon dioxide (a less powerful GHG). Even the recycling of waste produces some emissions (although ...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Contribution from waste to climate change Contribution from waste to climate change
The disposal and treatment of waste can produce emissions of several greenhouse gases (GHGs), which contribute to global climate change. The most significant GHG gas produced from waste is methane. It is released during the breakdown of organic matter in landfills. Other forms of waste disposal also produce GHGs but these are mainly in the form of carbon dioxide (a less powerful GHG). Even the recycling of waste produces some emissions (although ...
17 May 2005 - by Philippe Rekacewicz, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Estimated contributions to sea-level rise (1993-2003) Estimated contributions to sea-level rise (1993-2003)
The two main reasons for sea-level rise are thermal expansion of ocean waters as they warm, and increase in the ocean mass, principally from land-based sources of ice (glaciers and ice caps, and the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica). Global warming from increasing greenhouse gas concentrations is a significant driver of both contributions to sea-level rise. From 1955 to 1995, ocean thermal expansion is estimated to have contributed about 0....
01 Oct 2007 - by Hugo Ahlenius, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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Some examples of the effect of individual behaviour on greenhouse gas emissions in France Some examples of the effect of individual behaviour on greenhouse gas emissions in France
The area of the squares is proportionate to the annual reduction in emissions in million tonnes of CO2 equivalent. Displaying main areas of housing investment, daily life and private car investment.
04 Jun 2008 - by Emmanuelle Bournay, UNEP/GRID-Arendal
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