Greenhouse gas emissions per unit of value a corporate guide to voluntary climate action
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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How much must I reduce my greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions if I want to do my fair share to contribute towards the global effort to keep global warming below a 2 °C rise in average temperature over preindustrial times? This paper suggests an answer for nations and corporations that want to move ahead of legislation on a voluntary basis. If all nations reduce their “GHG emissions per unit of GDP” by 5% per year, global GHG emissions will be 50% lower in 2050 than in 2010 as long as the global economy continues to grow at its historical rate of 3.5% per year. The suggested 5% per year decline can be translated into a corporate resolution to reduce corporate “GHG emissions per unit of value added” (GEVA) by 5% per year. If all corporations cut their GEVA by 5% per year, the same global result will be achieved. The suggested 5% per year decline can be used as a guideline for responsible action on a voluntary basis. The guideline is unlikely to be made mandatory soon, but compulsory publication of the necessary emissions and productivity data by nations and corporations could help civil society highlight top performers.
This is the originally published version of the article, as published by the publisher Elsevier. Paid Open Access in a hybrid journal.