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Setting Sustainable Development Goals – A Dynamical Systems Approach

Environment and Climate Change

Employing a novel dynamical system modeling approach with global data, our best-fit model identifies the mechanisms for reducing global greenhouse gas emissions to under 44 gigatonnes of carbondioxide equivalent (GtCO2e) by 2020. Our results show that with a business-as-usual scenario the global emissions will reach 61 GtCO2e by 2020. We test the estimated parameters to suggest options to set the Sustainable Development Goals in the post- 2015 scenario. The analysis shows that a democratic equal reduction in the total emissions of all countries would imply a reduction of about 27.6% . The burden of reducing emissions, however, would not change much if the top 25 global emitters (includes, China, India, United States, Canada, Germany etc.) bear the full burden of this reduction. In a business-as-usual scenario where no global emission cuts are implemented, the model suggests that the emission-reduction technology should improve by at least 2.6 percent and tastes and preferences should improve by 3.5 percent, if the global emissions reduction target is to be met.

491wp_0.pdf (1.02 MB)
Shyam Ranganathan
Ranjula Bali Swain
Publication Date
January, 2014