Modern Climate Change test

 Emissions Scenarios

Predictions of how much greenhouse gas will be emitted into the atmosphere each year from human activities.

Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
The total value of goods and services produced by an economy – total emissions by a society are basically set by that society’s GDP.
Greenhouse-gas Intensity
How much greenhouse gas is emitted for every dollar of consumption.
IPAT Relation (Kaya Identity)
The equation I = PAT

I = total emissions of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere (climate Impacts)
P = Population
A = Affluence (GDP per person)
T = Greenhouse-gas intensity

Energy Intensity
The number of joules of energy it takes to generate 1 dollar of goods and services (features as “EI” in the equation T = EI x CI)
Carbon Intensity
The amount of greenhouse gas emitted per joule of energy generated (features as “CI” in the equation T = EI x CI)
T = EI x CI
Greenhouse-gas intensity (T) is the product of energy intensity (EI) and carbon intensity (CI). Energy intensity reflects the efficiency with which the society uses energy as well as the mix of economic activities in the society. The carbon intensity reflects the technologies the society uses to generate energy.
IPCC predictions
Putting these emission scenarios into a climate model yields predictions of warming over the 21st century of 1.8 – 3.6 degrees C; several times the warming of .7 degC over the course of the 20th century.
Adaptation
Responding to the negative impacts of climate change.
Mitigation
Policies that avoid climate change in the first place, thereby preventing impacts such as sea-level rise from occurring.
Geoengineering
Active manipulation of the climate system. Under this approach, our society would continue adding greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, but we would intentionally change some other aspect of the climate in order to cancel the warming effects of the greenhouse gases.
Renewable energy
Energy sources which are not depleted when utilized – i.e. hydroelectric, solar, wind, and biomass energy
Carbon-free, Climate-safe energy sources
Energy sources which do not release greenhouse gases – i.e. nuclear energy, carbon capture and sequestration, and renewable energy sources.
Solar Photovoltaic
The most common form of solar energy utilizing solar panels.
Solar Thermal
Uses mirrors to concentrate sunlight ona working fluid (such as oil, molten salt, or pressurized steam), heating it to several hundred degrees Celsius. This hot fluid is used to boil water and drive a turbine, which in turn drives a generator that provides electricity
Carbon Capture and Storage (Carbon Sequestration)
A process by which fossil fuel is burned in such a way that the carbon dioxide generated is not vented to the atmosphere.
Externality
Occurs when someone takes an action, and this action imposes involuntary costs on others.
Market Failure
When a manufacturer will not switch to a more climate friendly method of manufacture due to cost issues.
Tragedy of the Commons
When people can exploit and degrade some common assets for free, then the result is that these assets tend to be over utilized.
Solar Radiation Management
Efforts to engineer a reduction in the amount of solar energy absorbed by the Earth (i.e. a “sun shade” between sun and Earth) resulting in a cooling of the planet
Carbon-cycle engineering
Attempting to modify the carbon cycle so that carbon dioxide is more rapidly removed from the atmosphere.
Biological Carbon Pump
Adding iron to the ocean has the net effect of transporting carbon from the upper layers into the deep ocean (by way of increasing phytoplankton blooms and therefore fish feeding/deification.
Air Capture
The removal of carbon dioxide from the air chemically. It is limited by the enormous amount of energy required to remove significant quantities of carbon.