Featured Report


CLIMATE CHANGE RISK AND THE MARYLAND STATE RETIREMENT AND PENSION SYSTEM

Climate change poses a real and meaningful threat to economies, industries, and companies at global, national, and local levels. The physical impacts of climate change create multiple, well-documented risks to people, governments, and business, but the risks are not limited to physical damages: other important risks include loss of competitiveness and value associated with the transition to a low carbon economy, and legal liability for the mismanagement of such risks. These risks are particularly relevant to public pension funds, which have long-running, predefined obligations to beneficiaries and need to sustain growth over longer time horizons.

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Affiliated Publications


Poverty eradication in a carbon constrained world

Klaus Hubacek, Giovanni Baiocchi, Kuishuang Feng & Anand Patwardhan

Abstract: The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change aims to keep warming below 2 °C while recognizing developing countries’ right to eradicate extreme poverty. Poverty eradication is also the first of the Sustainable Development Goals. This paper investigates potential consequences for climate targets of achieving poverty eradication. We find that eradicating extreme poverty, i.e., moving people to an income above $1.9 purchasing power parity (PPP) a day, does not jeopardize the climate target even in the absence of climate policies and with current technologies. On the other hand, bringing everybody to a still modest expenditure level of at least $2.97 PPP would have long-term consequences on achieving emission targets. Compared to the reference mitigation pathway, eradicating extreme poverty increases the effort by 2.8% whereas bringing everybody to at least $2.97 PPP would increase the required mitigation rate by 27%. Given that the top 10% global income earners are responsible for 36% of the current carbon footprint of households; the discourse should address income distribution and the carbon intensity of lifestyles.

You can access the paper on Nature's website here.