Greenhouse gas forecasting and target setting using an ex-post analysis

Immink, Harmke (2019-04)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY: Concerns about the impact of climate change are driving the need for stabilising the global temperature rise to below 2oC. In parallel to countries making commitments under the Paris Agreement, sector decarbonisation trajectories are being developed. Globally, collective action is required, and cities and companies are increasingly requested to voluntary set greenhouse gas (GHG) targets. Tracking progress is key to meeting the objectives of the Paris Agreement. In order to track progress against a GHG target or commitment, a credible GHG inventory, as well as the associated emissions reduction from GHG mitigation actions, are required. An analytical technique was developed the present GHG inventory, corrected if needed, together with the GHG mitigation actions to construct a counterfactual baseline. This counterfactual baseline is compared to the GHG target in one infographic. South Africa committed to a peak, plateau, and decline trajectory. However, the latest publicly available inventory is for 2010, but can be extrapolated based on trade statistics. The inventory is based on the default Tier 1 coal calorific values of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and could be over reported by 20%. A methodological approach is proposed, where the emissions from coal calorific value, together with trade statistics, are quantified and presented together with the GHG emission reduction estimates of implemented mitigation policies and measures. Companies in the mining sector of South Africa voluntary signed a 15% GHG reduction over a ten-year period from 2005, linked to the South African Energy Efficiency Accord. GHG emissions increase as mining companies transport ore over increased distances in opencast operations, or extract ore from deeper levels in underground operations. The GHG inventories of a gold and an iron ore mining company, together with the implemented projects, are analysed to evaluate progress. The decarbonisation trajectories of cities are linked to the implementation of national commitments and voluntary target setting commitments under the Global Covenant of Mayors. Within a developing country context, with rapid urbanisation and limited data, tracking the greenhouse gas inventory against the targets is challenging. This study looks at four cities in South Africa that made greenhouse gas reduction commitments and supplied inventory data into publicly available databases. The greenhouse gas data for each city is extrapolated based on official data from national census and socio-economic studies. The formal commitment to meeting the sustainable development goals was announced 2016, to providing basic drinking water, sanitation, electricity, as well as transport for citizens currently unemployed. This study provides insights into the trade-off between additional GHG emissions in meeting the sustainable development goals in fast-growing cities of a developing country, and the decarbonisation commitment of these cities. Tracking progress against absolute greenhouse gas reduction targets should take the uncertainties of the underlying data for GHG inventories, and mitigation outcomes, into account. Quantification of the emission reductions of implemented mitigation initiatives is critical in managing emissions against a GHG mitigation trajectory. The importance of this study is to enhance transparency in a data poor environment, while keeping the focus on mitigation action.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Motivering om die wereldwye temperatuur onder 2oC te hou word gerugsteun deur kommer oor die impak van klimaat verandering. In parallel met lande wat hulle verbind het om kweekhuisgasse te verminder onder die Parys Ooreenkoms neem sektore ook aksie. Globaal moet kweekhuisgasse verminder en maatskappye en stede word gevra om ook vrywillig kweekhuisgas doelwitte te stel om die wereldwye doelwit te behaal. Daarom is dit ook noodsaaklik om vordering te monitor teenoor die verskeie kweekhuisgas doelwitte. ‘n Analitiese metode is ontwikkel om kweekhuisgas inventarisse te korrigeer waar nodig, en saam met die verminderingsaksies te vertoon om so n denkbeeldige basislyn te bereken. Hierdie denkbeeldige basis lyn kan gebruik word om vordering teenoor die doelwit te bereken in een inligtingsdiagram. Hierdie metodiek is toegepas in drie verskillende situasies naamlik, nasional, stads en maatskappyvlak, as deel van drie gevallestudies. Die analitiese metode was toepasbaar op al drie hierdie gevallestudies. In Suid Afrika is die laaste inventaris is goedgekeur in 2010. Hierdie inventaris is gebaseer op standaard vlak 1 IPCC steenkool kalorie waardes en is 20% meer as wanneer die werklike kalorie waardes gebruik word. n Metode word voorgestel waarmee die kweekhuisgas inventaris aangepas word met werklike steenkool kalorie waardes en n oorbrugging gedoen word met handelsstatistiek en kweekhuis gas vermindering projekte. Hiermee is dit makliker om die vordering te volg. Dit is veral sinvol vir lande waar die data onsekerheid is hoog of waar die nationale statistiek beperk is. Maatskappye in die mynbou sektor van Suid Afrika het hulle ook vrywillig verbind aan ‘n 15% vermindering oor n tienjaarperiode vanaf 2005, die Energie Effektiwiteits Ooreenkoms. Kweekhuisgas emissies neem toe as mynbou maatskappye erts oor n langer afstand vervoer in oopgroef myne of erts dieper myn in ondergrondse myne. Die kweekhuis gas emissies van n goud en yster erts mynbou maatskappy, saam met die projekte wat geimplementeer is, word saam geevalueer om vordering teen die doelwitte te monitor. Die kweekhuis gas trajek van stede hou verband met die implimentering van nasionale doelwitte asook ‘n vrywillige doelwit onder die wereldwye Burgemeester Ooreenkoms. In ‘n ontwikkelende land konteks met vinnige verstedeliking, maar ook beperkte data is opdatering van ‘n kweekhuis gas inventaris is baie moeilik. Hierdie studie het gekyk na vier stede in Suid Afrika wat kweekhuis gas doelwitte gestel het en inventaris data openbaar gemaak het. Die kweekhuisgas data, vir elke stad is geekstrapoleer op basis van national sensus en sosio-ekonomiese data. Die impak van ontwikkeling vir die volhoubaarheidsdoelwitte teenoor vermindering van die kweekhuisgasse is uitgelig, om insig te gee in probleme van vinnig groeiende stede in ontwikkelende lande. Vordering teenoor doelwitte op hierdie manier neem die onsekerheid van die onderliggende data in die kweekhuisgas inventaris en verminderings inisiatiewe in ag. Kwantifisering van die kweekhuis gasse van verminderingsprojekte is noodsaaklik vir bestuur van n verminderings trajek en die behaling van doelwitte. Die waarde van hierdie metodiek is om helderheid te verkry in n data arm omgewing terwyl die fokus bly op verminderings aksie.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/105740
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