COP18 (03/12/12) – Jason Blackstock from the University of Oxford talks about the importance of addressing short-lived climate pollutants.
He explains the three main sources of these – methane, black carbon and HFCs – and where these greenhouse gases are used.
He explains why these gases have not been given the same focus as CO2 over the last 20 years – while CO2 builds up over time and remains in the atmosphere for a longer period of time, these short-lived pollutants drop out of the atmosphere over shorter periods.
He says that a lot more work has been done over recent years to both understand the metrics of these pollutants – their carbon dioxide equivalent or global warming potential – but also the science and policy opportunities for tackling these gases.
He says that reducing the short-lived climate pollutants in the atmosphere between now and 2050 could prevent 0.5°C of warming.