By Daniel Webster, dWeb.News
Newswise — Scientists on the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCCC) have been focusing on human-induced climate changes for more than 30 years. Their fifth assessment report resulted in the 2015 Paris Agreement and a special report on the danger that global warming exceeds 1.5 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. The Nobel Prize-winning team stated that mitigating global warming would make it easier to achieve sustainable development in many areas, with greater potential for poverty elimination and reducing inequalities. Drew Marcantonio, University of Notre Dame postdoctoral researcher, and Sean Field (anthropology) doctoral student, combined assessments of the risks of toxic and nontoxic emissions and people’s vulnerability to them. Debra Javeline, Associate Professor of Political Science at Princeton, and Agustin Fuentes (formerly of Notre Dame) discovered a strong statistically significant relationship between the global climate risk and toxic pollutants. They found strong statistical correlation between the spatial distribution of global climate risk and toxic pollution. In their forthcoming PLOS paper, “Global Distribution and Coincidence of Pollution, Climate Impacts and Health Risk in the Anthropocene”, they write: “Deaths due to toxic pollution are highest in areas where the distribution of polluting substances is greatest and, critically also, where climate change impacts pose the greatest risk. Javeline stated, “It is not surprising that these risks are highly related, but this article provides data and analysis to support policy, data that was previously lacking, and data that was also available to inform policy.” They used data from three indexes to complete the study. ND-GAIN, an index of 182 nations, summarizes a country’s vulnerability and exposure to climate risks. It also shows its readiness to improve climate resilience. EPI ranks 180 countries based on 24 performance indicators covering 10 issue categories that cover ecosystem vitality and environmental health. The GAHP estimates the number and causes of deaths from toxic pollution in a country based on 24 performance indicators across 10 issue categories. These criteria suggest that the top 10 countries to focus on are Singapore and Thailand. Equatorial Guinea is, Iraq, Jordan and Central African Republic are among those at the bottom. These countries are most likely to have outstanding governance problems that prevent them from effectively addressing pollution. “Notably, our findings show that the top one third of countries at greatest risk of climate impacts and toxic pollution represent more than two-thirds the world’s population. This highlights the scale of the problem as well as the uneven distribution of environmental risk. Knowing that a large proportion of the world’s population lives and works in countries that have higher levels of toxic pollution and climate impacts risk is crucial to maximize human harm reductions, they write. The impressive results of China’s 2013 Air Pollution Prevention and Control Action Plan, which targets toxic emissions specifically, are astounding. Since the plan was implemented, researchers have seen a 40% reduction in toxic emissions. Researchers have seen a 40% reduction in toxic emissions since the plan was implemented. However, it is important to reflect on morally what actions should be taken and who they should be taken. Marcantonio stated that this is especially true considering the inverse relationship between who produces these risks and who is most at-risk. The University will host a series conversations on the theme “Care For Our Common Home: Just Transition To a Sustainable Future.” The forum will host a variety of events and discussions, inspired by Pope Francis’ continuing emphasis on these issues and Laudato Si’. The Notre Dame Forum was established in 2005 and has featured many talks by top authorities on important issues to the University, nation, and wider world. These include the challenges and opportunities presented by globalization, the role and importance of presidential debates and immigration, and the place for faith in a pluralistic society.
More dWeb.News Science Research at https://dweb.news/category/dweb-news/section-u-understanding-education-news/