Preprints
https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2018-22
https://doi.org/10.5194/esd-2018-22
08 May 2018
 | 08 May 2018
Status: this preprint was under review for the journal ESD but the revision was not accepted.

Only the instantaneous global warming potential is consistent with honest and responsible greenhouse gas accounting

Peter Nightingale

Abstract. This paper presents a simple model to describe the impact on global warming of methane (natural gas) when used for energy production. The model is used to estimate the near-term effect of energy policies based on natural gas as a bridge fuel. The results make it clear that the commonly employed global warming potential of methane with a 100-year time horizon has the following problems:

1: it produces misleading results;

2: is inconsistent with meaningful tracking of greenhouse gas emissions; and

3: is incompatible with the precautionary principle.

Publisher's note: Copernicus Publications remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims made in the text, published maps, institutional affiliations, or any other geographical representation in this preprint. The responsibility to include appropriate place names lies with the authors.
Peter Nightingale
 
Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
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Status: closed
Status: closed
AC: Author comment | RC: Referee comment | SC: Short comment | EC: Editor comment
Printer-friendly Version - Printer-friendly version Supplement - Supplement
Peter Nightingale
Peter Nightingale

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Latest update: 16 Jul 2024
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Short summary
This paper discusses flawed use of the global warming potential, a metric accepted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to assess the impact on global warming of, among others, combustion of methane, natural gas. The paper identifies problems of the generally used delayed-impact version of the metric: (1) it produces misleading results; (2) it is inconsistent with meaningful tracking of greenhouse gas emissions; and (3) it is incompatible with the precautionary principle.
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