Check out this selection of eight simulations that show us pathways to addressing climate change at different scales.
In a world of interacting parts, where one things lead to another, which leads back to the other and off to another, simulations can help us understand the pathways that will address the challenges we face. These tools below complement the simulations we have created at Climate Interactive to see what works in addressing climate change. Thanks to our colleague at MIT’s Climate CoLab, Rob Laubacher, who pulled together this collection. Last year we covered some of these simulations in our popular review of games focused on climate change.
- Living Earth Simulator - An ambitious European project that is starting up, which aims to simulate our global social systems. http://www.futurict.eu/the-project/proposal
- Fate of the World - A computer game based on the work of Myles Allen at Oxford. The game’s goal is to prevent global warming through actions like bans on certain fuel types or investment in new technologies. http://fateoftheworld.net/
Climate Interactive Co-Director Beth Sawin is one of the co-authors of the UNEP Emissions Gap Report, which is getting widespread coverage, as eyes focus on this year’s climate negotiations hosted by the tiny oil-rich middle eastern country of Qatar. Below is coverage of the negotiations featuring Climate Interactive from Live Science. Beth was also interviewed yesterday by radio station KUOW in Seattle.
What Can Climate Talks in Doha Accomplish?
Published on Live Science 26 November 2012, written by Wynne Parry
The international community’s attempts to address global warming, and its potentially devastating consequences, resume in earnest today (Nov. 26), as delegates gather in Doha, Qatar.
This is the latest round in two decades of U.N. climate talks that have sought to stem rising greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which climate scientists warn will lead to devastating sea-level rise, changes in weather and other natural systems.
For those following and participating in the negotiations in Doha, especially those working on the ADP, Climate Interactive provides our C-ROADS simulator free of charge for you to assess the impact that national and regional emission reduction pledges have on climate change.
This robust tool enables the comparison and summation of pledges from up to 15 different regions with different reference years and units, making it easy to compare pledges to reduce carbon intensity with carbon emission reductions.
“For the first time, with C-ROADS, we have a way to capture on the spot the implications of the key decisions that will be made around the follow-up to Kyoto, with sobering and powerful results.” — Dr. Jacqueline McGlade, Executive Director, European Environment Agency
Find out more and request a copy today: http://climateinteractive.org/simulations/C-ROADS
Building on our analysis at previous negotiations, Climate Interactive will be in Doha and is available for consultations on our tools and services. Please contact email@example.com to determine our availability.
Ahead of climate talks in Doha, Qatar next week, the UN Environmental Programme has released the third Emissions Gap Report. Climate Interactive Co-Director Beth Sawin is once again one of the report’s authors. Like the World Bank report released last week, this report reminds us that reducing our emissions is paramount.
Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, summarized the Emissions Gap report by saying, “This report is a reminder that time is running out, but that the technical means and the policy tools to allow the world to stay below a maximum 2 degrees Celsius are still available to governments and societies”. The reminder that the gap between a 2 degree future and where we are now is still widening, and that countries are still putting forward targets that are far short of what is needed is sobering.
The Emissions Gap report goes beyond the stark assessments of where we are relative to where we need to be, by identifying sectors where dramatic reduction can be made to bridge the gap. Continue reading
John Sterman, MIT Professor and fellow collaborator on many Climate Interactive projects, lays out the stark realities we are facing with climate change inaction in his presentation at the MIT Museum last month. He describes the risks we face by not taking immediate measures to address climate change in every sector of society and equates it to playing Russian Roulette with a revolver that has 19 of 20 chambers filled. His conclusion: we can despair, take no action, and allow the worst case to happen, or we can immediately initiate measures to reduce our carbon emissions as an insurance policy against the worst risks. Watch the video below for his complete presentation. Beginning around time 27:40 Professor Sterman demonstrates the unexpected dynamics of time delays and shows the Climate Interactive C-ROADS simulation, to demonstrate common misunderstandings about our climate system.
Climate Interactive has developed the World Energy Exercise to provide a simulation-based experience to help deepen participants’ understanding of potential policy and investment scenarios to address our global energy challenges. Recently, Drew Jones led a version of World Energy for 100 energy graduate students at Stanford University. More on the event is here. The video below summarizes that event.
With Climate Interactive’s En-ROADS simulation it becomes possible to try out differently energy policies and scenarios and quickly see how they will effect our world. Recently Climate Interactive Co-Director Beth Sawin led a workshop to exhibit the features of En-ROADS and explore the insights it provides. Below is a review of the event from Sarah Parkinson at the Donella Meadows Institute that explains some of the interesting results that the En-ROADS simulation provides.
by Sarah Parkinson, Donella Meadows Institute
When we talk about climate change, we’re really talking about systems—a whole web of linked issues. We can’t really discuss the eroding health of our planet without bringing up the causes of that decline, such as habitat destruction and resource extraction. Mention of resource extraction brings us to the extractive fossil fuel industry, which in turn brings us to our economy of cheap energy. From the economy we can easily segue to issues like continuous growth and the recent economic crisis, which lead to questions of wellbeing and security. And security connects right back to the threats of climate change. These are all complex, interconnected challenges that affect our lives. And, as Elizabeth Sawin remarked at a talk last week, “Humans aren’t doing a very good job of managing that complexity.”
The best tool to quickly analyze the long-term effects of different combinations of country and regional climate change mitigation proposals just got a little bit better. Just two months out from the next round of the international climate change negotiations, we’re releasing an updated version of the C-ROADS simulator. We’ve updated the data behind the model with the latest available and are giving users even more graphs and controls, along with resolving a few bugs to help you out. If you have yet to get behind the controls of this powerful simulator you can request a download on Climate Interactive’s website. If you would like to update your version of C-ROADS just login and navigate to the download page. Read below for all the details of the changes we’ve made or watch our latest tutorial video to walk you through the changes.
Stanford students debating energy policy with En-ROADS
Last week graduate students at Stanford University got a special treat. As part of the Energy@Stanford & SLAC conference, students in energy-related fields at Stanford got to play with En-ROADS, Climate Interactive’s latest simulator, which demonstrates how different energy policies could make a difference in the decades to come. Exploring whether the accelerated retirement of coal-fired power plants paired with subsidies in renewable energy will help us reduce our emissions better than a $50 price on each ton of CO2, is just one of countless policy configurations that the En-ROADS simulation lets users explore. The Energy@Stanford & SLAC conference was co-sponsored by Stanford’s Precourt Institute for Energy, SIMES, the Global Climate and Energy Project, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Office of the Vice Provost of Graduate Education at Stanford.