Using climate modeling and interdisciplinary theory to analyze climate justice impacts of the Paris Agreement

Authors: Shaina Sadai*, UMass Amherst
Topics: Global Change, Applied Geography, Environmental Justice
Keywords: climate, climate justice, Paris Agreement
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/10/2021
Start / End Time: 11:10 AM / 12:25 PM
Room: Virtual 6
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The science linking anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions with our changing climate, and the resulting impacts, has been well established for decades. During that time one of the focal points of international negotiations was to establish a common target for action to address climate change. These negotiations culminated in the Paris Agreement at COP21 in 2015 which seeks to limit the global mean surface temperature (GMST) rise to well below 2C above pre-industrial, and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5C. Using a case study of impacts from a destabilization of the Antarctic ice sheet this research seeks to assess the climate justice implications of using global mean surface temperature as a metric for climate action. The analysis combines data from ice sheet models and fully coupled global climate model simulations with interdisciplinary analysis of climate justice. Considering the political and scientific history of the development of the temperature target alongside global impacts of climate change, including the spatial variability in sea level rise, we gain a new understanding of spatial, temporal, and procedural aspects of climate justice.

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