Our Common Future Under Climate Change

International Scientific Conference 7-10 JULY 2015 Paris, France

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Wednesday 8 July - 11:30-13:00 UNESCO Fontenoy - ROOM XI

L2.1 - Drivers of Change and Visions of Development

Large Parallel Session

Chair(s): R. Defries (Columbia University, New York, NY, United States of America)

Co-Convener(s): L. Yonglong (Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China)

11:30

Energy Transition towards Two-Degree Target: The Case of China

J. Kejun (Energy Research Institute , Beijing, China)

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Energy Transition towards Two-Degree Target: The Case of China
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11:50

The Climate-Development ‘Conflict': Asking the right questions

N. Rao (IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria)

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The Climate-Development ‘Conflict': Asking the right questions

N. Rao (1)
(1) IIASA, Energy, Laxenburg, Austria

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There is both confusion and concern regarding the impact of poverty eradication on climate change. Some equate poverty eradication with coal use, particularly in India and China; others assume consumption from people rising out of poverty would be highly material-intensive. What if all the world’s poor had refrigerators? What implications does economic development have for stabilizing climate change at 2 degrees C? Conjectures abound, but scientific research so far offers few real answers to these questions. This is in part because we haven’t been asking the right questions. What stands between poverty eradication and greenhouse gas emissions is the nature of developing countries’ development pathways, income distribution, patterns of energy use, technological development, and different scenarios of global cooperation on climate change mitigation. There is much yet to be learned about the interaction of these drivers. New approaches to quantifying human development and energy use shows that there have been many low-carbon development pathways in the past, and that meeting basic needs may be less carbon intensive than growth in affluence. Current trends in India reveal an exponential growth in low-carbon resources, even among the poor. While basic development aspirations cannot be thwarted, their impact on climate change is by no means outside the realm of influence by both national and international policy.

12:10

Panel discussion: Linking Climate and Development Goals

R. Reid (Colorado State University, Fort Collins, United States of America), Y. Lu (Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China), Q. Han , D. Chen (Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden)

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Panel discussion: Linking Climate and Development Goals
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12:30

Q&A session

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Q&A session
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