Cross Chapter Box 2: Figure 1

Implications of different approaches to calculating aggregate greenhouse gas emissions on a pathway to net zero.

(a) Aggregate emissions of well-mixed greenhouse gases (WMGHGs) under the RCP2.6 mitigation scenario expressed as CO2-equivalent using GWP100 (blue); GTP100 (green) and GWP* (yellow). Aggregate WMGHG emissions appear to fall more rapidly if calculated using GWP* than using either GWP or GTP, primarily because GWP* equates a falling methane emission rate with negative CO2 emissions, as only active CO2 removal would have the same impact on radiative forcing and GMST as a reduction in methane emission rate. (b) Cumulative emissions of WMGHGs combined as in panel (a) (blue, green and yellow lines & left hand axis) and warming response to combined emissions (black dotted line and right hand axis, Millar et al. (2017a). The temperature response under ambitious mitigation is closely correlated with cumulative WMGHG emissions aggregated using GWP*, but with neither emission rate nor cumulative emissions if aggregated using GWP or GTP.