Glen P. Peters's research while affiliated with Woodwell Climate Research Center and other places

Publications (184)

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Knowledge of the spatial distribution of the fluxes of greenhouse gases and their temporal variability as well as flux attribution to natural and anthropogenic processes is essential to monitoring the progress in mitigating anthropogenic emissions under the Paris Agreement and to inform its Global Stocktake. This study provides a consolidated synth...
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This review explains the science behind the drive for global net zero emissions and why this is needed to halt the ongoing rise in global temperatures. We document how the concept of net zero carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions emerged from an earlier focus on stabilization of atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations. Using simple conceptual models o...
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Day-to-day changes in CO2 emissions from human activities, in particular fossil-fuel combustion and cement production, reflect a complex balance of influences from seasonality, working days, weather and, most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we provide a daily CO2 emissions dataset for the whole year of 2020, calculated from inventory and nea...
Preprint
While the IPCC’s physical science report usually assesses a handful of future scenarios, the IPCC Sixth Assessment Working Group III report (AR6 WGIII) on climate mitigation assesses hundreds to thousands of future emissions scenarios. A key task is to assess the global-mean temperature outcomes of these scenarios in a consistent manner, given the...
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p>Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere in a changing climate is critical to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe and synthesize datasets...
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Meeting the Paris Agreement temperature goal necessitates limiting methane (CH 4 )-induced warming, in addition to achieving net-zero or (net-negative) carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions. In our model, for the median 1.5°C scenario between 2020 and 2050, CH 4 mitigation lowers temperatures by 0.1°C; CO 2 increases it by 0.2°C. CO 2 emissions continue...
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Most of the integrated assessment modelling literature focuses on cost-effective pathways towards given temperature goals. Conversely, using seven diverse integrated assessment models, we project global energy CO2 emissions trajectories on the basis of near-term mitigation efforts and two assumptions on how these efforts continue post-2030. Despite...
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To track progress towards keeping global warming well below 2 • C or even 1.5 • C, as agreed in the Paris Agreement, comprehensive up-to-date and reliable information on anthropogenic emissions and removals of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is required. Here we compile a new synthetic dataset on anthropogenic GHG emissions for 1970-2018 with a fast...
Preprint
Full-text available
Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere in a changing climate is critical to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe and synthesize data sets...
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With climate change intensifying and scientists warning that humanity is running out of time to limit global warming to 1.5°C over pre-industrial levels, 2021 has been a fraught year for the planet. The Emissions Gap Report 2021: The Heat Is On is the 12th edition in an annual series that provides an overview of the difference between where greenh...
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Despite three decades of political efforts and a wealth of research on the causes and catastrophic impacts of climate change, global carbon dioxide emissions have continued to rise and are 60% higher today than they were in 1990. Exploring this rise through nine thematic lenses—covering issues of climate governance, the fossil fuel industry, geopol...
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Recent demands by developing countries, like India, that developed countries need to reach net-negative emissions, must be negotiated seriously under the UNFCCC. Failure to acknowledge that limiting global average temperature rise to 1.5°C leaves very little carbon budget for equitable redistribution risks further ambiguity on how to achieve the Pa...
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The Paris Agreement seeks to combine international efforts to keep global temperature increase to well‐below 2°C. Whilst current ambitions in many signatories are insufficient to achieve this goal, optimism prevailed in the second half of 2020. Not only did several major emitters announce net‐zero mitigation targets around mid‐century, but the new...
Preprint
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To track progress towards keeping warming well below 2 °C, as agreed upon in the Paris Agreement, comprehensive and reliable information on anthropogenic sources of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) is required. Here we provide a dataset on anthropogenic GHG emissions 1970–2019 with a broad country and sector coverage. We build the dataset from recent...
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Recent calls to do climate policy research with, rather than for, stakeholders have been answered in non-modelling science. Notwithstanding progress in modelling literature, however, very little of the scenario space traces back to what stakeholders are ultimately concerned about. With a suite of eleven integrated assessment, energy system and sect...
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Reliable quantification of the sources and sinks of greenhouse gases, together with trends and uncertainties, is essential to monitoring the progress in mitigating anthropogenic emissions under the Paris Agreement. This study provides a consolidated synthesis of CH4 and N2O emissions with consistently derived state-of-the-art bottom-up (BU) and top...
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p>Reliable quantification of the sources and sinks of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), including that of their trends and uncertainties, is essential to monitoring the progress in mitigating anthropogenic emissions under the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. This study provides a consolidated synthesis of estimates for all anthropogenic and...
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Greenhouse gas (GHG) emission inventories represent the link between national and international political actions on climate change, and climate and environmental sciences. Inventory agencies need to include, in national GHG inventories, emission and removal estimates based on scientific data following specific reporting guidance under the United N...
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Harmonisation sets the ground to a solid inter-comparison of integrated assessment models. A clear and transparent harmonisation process promotes a consistent interpretation of the modelling outcomes divergences and, reducing the model variance, is instrumental to the use of integrated assessment models to support policy decision-making. Despite it...
Preprint
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The diurnal cycle CO$_2$ emissions from fossil fuel combustion and cement production reflect seasonality, weather conditions, working days, and more recently the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, for the first time we provide a daily CO$_2$ emission dataset for the whole year of 2020 calculated from inventory and near-real-time activity data (...
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Five years after the adoption of the Paris Climate Agreement, growth in global CO2 emissions has begun to falter. The pervasive disruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic have radically altered the trajectory of global CO2 emissions. Contradictory effects of the post-COVID-19 investments in fossil fuel-based infrastructure and the recent strengthening...
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Quantification of CO 2 fluxes at the Earth’s surface is required to evaluate the causes and drivers of observed increases in atmospheric CO 2 concentrations. Atmospheric inversion models disaggregate observed variations in atmospheric CO 2 concentration to variability in CO 2 emissions and sinks. They require prior constraints fossil CO 2 emissions...
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Countries’ historical contributions to climate change have been on the agenda for more than two decades and will most likely continue to be an element in future international discussions and negotiations on climate. Previous studies have quantified the historical contributions to climate change across a range of choices and assumptions. In contrast...
Preprint
Full-text available
Reliable quantification of the sources and sinks of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), including that of their trends and uncertainties, is essential to monitoring the progress in mitigating anthropogenic emissions under the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. This study provides a consolidated synthesis of estimates for all anthropogenic and na...
Article
Full-text available
Reliable quantification of the sources and sinks of greenhouse gases, together with trends and uncertainties, is essential to monitoring the progress in mitigating anthropogenic emissions under the Paris Agreement. This study provides a consolidated synthesis of CH4 and N2O emissions with consistently derived state-of-the-art bottom-up (BU) and top...
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Full-text available
Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere in a changing climate – the “global carbon budget” – is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we de...
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Global net-negative carbon emissions are prevalent in almost all emission pathways that meet the Paris temperature targets. In this paper, we generate and compare cost-effective emission pathways that satisfy two different types of climate targets. First, the common approach of a radiative forcing target that has to be met by the year 2100 (RF2100)...
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Nitrous oxide (N2O), like carbon dioxide, is a long-lived greenhouse gas that accumulates in the atmosphere. Over the past 150 years, increasing atmospheric N2O concentrations have contributed to stratospheric ozone depletion¹ and climate change², with the current rate of increase estimated at 2 per cent per decade. Existing national inventories do...
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The 1.5°C target will require removing at least some of the carbon dioxide (CO2) previously emitted. Knowledge on how this can be done has been increasing, though barriers remain concerning governance, policy, and acceptability. For the 26th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP26) to move beyond an academic debate on CO2 removal (CDR), a b...
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Understanding and quantifying the global methane (CH4) budget is important for assessing realistic pathways to mitigate climate change. Atmospheric emissions and concentrations of CH4 continue to increase, making CH4 the second most important human-influenced greenhouse gas in terms of climate forcing, after carbon dioxide (CO2). The relative impor...
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Resolving regional carbon budgets is critical for informing land-based mitigation policy. For nine regions covering nearly the whole globe, we collected inventory estimates of carbon-stock changes complemented by satellite estimates of biomass changes where inventory data are missing. The net land–atmospheric carbon exchange (NEE) was calculated by...
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The satellites that have been designed to support the monitoring of fossil fuel CO 2 emissions aim to systematically measure atmospheric CO 2 plumes generated by intense emissions from large cities, power plants and industrial sites. These data can be assimilated into atmospheric transport models in order to estimate the corresponding emissions. Ho...
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Government policies during the COVID-19 pandemic have drastically altered patterns of energy demand around the world. Many international borders were closed and populations were confined to their homes, which reduced transport and changed consumption patterns. Here we compile government policies and activity data to estimate the decrease in CO2 emi...
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Emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and removals from land, including both anthropogenic and natural fluxes, require reliable quantification, including estimates of uncertainties, to support credible mitigation action under the Paris Agreement. This study provides a state-of-the-art scientific overview of bottom-up anthropogenic emissions data from...
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The underlying drivers of changes in the greenhouse gas emissions over time in India are investigated using several complementary approaches. Emission projections are developed based on India's Intended Nationally Determined Contributions and compared with a range of emission scenarios. Projections show continued economic growth that leads to risin...
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New synthesis shows what a wasted decade means for the climate pact made in Paris. New synthesis shows what a wasted decade means for the climate pact made in Paris.
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Stop using the worst-case scenario for climate warming as the most likely outcome — more-realistic baselines make for better policy. Stop using the worst-case scenario for climate warming as the most likely outcome — more-realistic baselines make for better policy. A rainbow forms behind giant windmills near rain-soaked Interstate 10, Palm Springs,...
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Full-text available
Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere – the “global carbon budget” – is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe data sets and m...
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Full-text available
25 Emission of greenhouse gases (GHG) and removals from land, including both anthropogenic and natural fluxes, require reliable quantification, along with estimates of their inherent uncertainties, in order to support credible mitigation action under the Paris Agreement. This study provides a state-of-the-art scientific overview of bottom-up anthro...
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Bastin et al . (Reports, 5 July 2019, p. 76) claim that global tree restoration is the most effective climate change solution to date, with a reported carbon storage potential of 205 gigatonnes of carbon. However, this estimate and its implications for climate mitigation are inconsistent with the dynamics of the global carbon cycle and its response...
Preprint
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Update estimates of the global methane cycle, including both natural and anthropogenic fluxes, up to 2017
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Focusing on global mitigation pathways masks key aspects of technical, political, and social feasibility, which play out at the country level. We illustrate the dilemma between a “carbon law” (halving emissions every decade) at the global level and the nationally determined contributions submitted at the country level. Our results suggest that even...
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Global emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) from fossil fuels and industry increased by 2.2% per year on average between 2005 and 2015¹. Global emissions need to peak and decline rapidly to limit climate change to well below 2 °C of warming2,3, which is one of the goals of the Paris Agreement⁴. Untangling the reasons underlying recent changes in emiss...
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While a rapid decommissioning of fossil fuel technologies deserves priority, most climate stabilization scenarios suggest that negative emission technologies (NETs) are required to keep global warming well below 2°C. Yet, current discussions on NETs are lacking a distinct energy perspective. Prominent NETs, such as bioenergy with carbon capture and...
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Full-text available
Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO 2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere-the "global carbon budget"-is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe data sets and meth...
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Full-text available
Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (<span classCombining double low line"inline-formula">CO2 ) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere - the "global carbon budget" - is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project f...
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With sources of renewable energy spreading fast, all sectors can do more to decarbonize the world, argue Christiana Figueres and colleagues. With sources of renewable energy spreading fast, all sectors can do more to decarbonize the world, argue Christiana Figueres and colleagues.
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To date, the burden of CO2 emissions reductions has been largely confined to large enterprises in China. Using new data with firm ownership and size information included, we show that micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) produced 53% of China's CO2 emissions in 2010. Detailed supply-chain analysis reveals that final demand for products...