Assignment 4: Climate Change
1. (3 points) Read the following article about the Paris Climate Agreement: https://unfccc.int/process-and-meetings/the-paris-agreement/what-is-the-paris-agreement and answer the following questions:
a. What is the agreement, who signed on and why did they do this?
b. What mechanism is being used to determine that countries meet their goals?
2. (3 points) The following report by the IPCC illustrates the importance of not exceeding 1.5 degree of warming: https://www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/sites/2/2019/05/SR15_SPM_version_report_LR.pdf. List 3 of the reasons in this report why limiting warming to 1.5C (instead of letting it go to 2C) is so important.
We are actively tracking the progress of countries towards the Paris commitments. One such tracker is the climate tracker (https://climateactiontracker.org). Use this interactive website to answer the following questions:
3. (3 points) How is the US doing in meeting the objectives determined by Obama and backtracked by Trump? Why is it important to involve the US in this effort (hint: look at the “Fair Share” tab).
4. (3 points) What is one country that is Paris Agreement compatible? What are they doing to help with climate change? Can they effectively combat climate change on their own?
One of the articles in this years UN climate negotiations is Madrid is international carbon markets. Read the following article about the controversy and answer the prompt: https://time.com/5748374/carbon-markets-paris-agreement/
5. (3 points) Why is a carbon market controversial? What has happened historically that has given carbon markets a bad rap? What kind of institutional structure must be in place if a carbon market is used for it to reduce emissions on a global basis? Why might some countries not want to commit to those requirements?
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