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Comparing the Effects of Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Global Warming

Richard S. Eckaus

Year: 1992
Volume: Volume 13
Number: Number 1
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol13-No1-2
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This paper analyses the usefulness as a policy tool of a physical index of radiative forcing of a greenhouse gas, the Global Warming Potential (GWP), as proposed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It is shown that the economic opportunity costs of an increment in radiative forcing will vary over time, while the GWP implicitly sets these costs equal. The GWP can, therefore, play no role in policy making.

The Role of Non-CO2 Greenhouse Gases and Carbon Sinks in Meeting Climate Objectives

Alan S. Manne and Richard G. Richels

Year: 2006
Volume: Multi-Greenhouse Gas Mitigation and Climate Policy
Number: Special Issue #3
DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-VolSI2006-NoSI3-20
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When conducting a multi-gas analysis, there are distinct advantages in moving from concentrations to radiative forcing. With the former, it is customary to use Global Warming Potentials (GWPs) for making tradeoffs among greenhouse gases. A number of studies have shown the arbitrariness of this approach and have argued that tradeoffs should be based on the contribution of each gas to achieving a particular target.1 Focusing on radiative forcing bypasses the need to rely on GWPs and provides for tradeoffs among gases based on their relative value.

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