Mitigating greenhouse: Limited time, limited options
Most human-caused climate change comes from fossil fuel combustion emissions. To avoid the risk of serious climate change, very recent research suggests that emission reductions will need to be both large and rapidly implemented. We argue that technical solutions--improving energy efficiency, use of renewable and nuclear energy, and carbon capture and sequestration--can only be of minor importance, mainly given the limited time available to take effective climate action. Only curbing energy use, perhaps through 'social efficiency' gains, particularly in the high-energy consumption countries, can provide the rapid emissions reductions needed. The social efficiency approach requires a basic rethinking in how we can satisfy our human needs with low environmental impacts. Large cuts in emissions could then occur rapidly, but only if resistance to such changes can be overcome. Particularly in transport, there are also serious potential conflicts between the technical and the social efficiency approaches, requiring a choice to be made.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Michael Huesemann, 2006. "Can Advances in Science and Technology Prevent Global Warming?," Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 539-577, May.
- Alcott, Blake, 2008. "The sufficiency strategy: Would rich-world frugality lower environmental impact," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(4), pages 770-786, February.
- Bows, Alice & Anderson, Kevin L., 2007. "Policy clash: Can projected aviation growth be reconciled with the UK Government's 60% carbon-reduction target?," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 103-110, March.
- Ribeiro, Suzana K & Kobayashi, Shigeki & Beuthe, Michel & Gasca, Jorge & Greene, David & Lee, David S. & Muromachi, Yasunori & Newton, Peter J. & Plotkin, Steven & Sperling, Daniel & Wit, Ron & Zhou, , 2007. "Transportation and its Infrastructure," Institute of Transportation Studies, Working Paper Series qt98m5t1rv, Institute of Transportation Studies, UC Davis.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:36:y:2008:i:4:p:1251-1256. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Shamier, Wendy)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.