IPCC Fourth Assessment Report: Climate Change 2007
Climate Change 2007: Working Group III: Mitigation of Climate Change

11.1 Introduction

This chapter takes a cross-sectoral approach to mitigation options and costs, and brings together the information in Chapters 4 to 10 to assess overall mitigation potential. It compares these sectoral estimates with the top-down estimates from Chapter 3, adopting a more short- and medium-term perspective, taking the assessment to 2030. It assesses the cross-sectoral and macro-economic cost literatures since the Third Assessment Report (TAR) (IPCC, 2001), and those covering the transition to a low-carbon economy, spillovers and co-benefits of mitigation.

The chapter starts with an overview of the cross-cutting options for mitigation policy (Section 11.2), including technologies that cut across sectors, such as hydrogen-based systems and options not covered in earlier chapters, examples being ocean fertilization, cloud creation and bio- and geo-engineering. Section 11.3 covers overall mitigation potential by sector, bringing together the various options, presenting the assessment of the sectoral implications of mitigation, and comparing bottom-up with top-down estimates. Section 11.4 covers the literature on the macro-economic costs of mitigation.

Since the TAR, there is much more literature on the quantita-tive implications of introducing endogenous technological change into the models. Many studies suggest that higher carbon prices and other climate policies will accelerate the adoption of low-carbon technologies and lower macroeconomic costs, with estimates ranging from a negligible amount to negative costs (net benefits). Section 11.5 describes the effects of introducing endogenous technological change into the models, and particularly the effects of inducing technological change through climate policies.

The remainder of the chapter looks at interactions of various kinds: Section 11.6 links the medium-term to the long-term issues discussed in Chapter 3, linking the shorter-term costs and social prices of carbon to the longer-term stabilization targets; 11.7 covers spillovers from action in one group of countries on the rest of the world; 11.8 covers co-benefits (particularly local air quality benefits) and costs; and 11.9 deals with synergies and trade-offs between mitigation and adaptation.