Here we present two new metrics used for comparing climate impacts of emissions of different climate forcers: the Global Sea level rise Potential (GSP) and the Integrated Global Sea level rise Potential (IGSP). The GSP represents the Sea Level Rise (SLR) at a given time horizon due to an emission pulse of a forcer; the IGSP is similar but represents the time integrated SLR up to a given point in time. The GSP and IGSP are presented relative to the SLR caused by a comparable emission pulse of carbon dioxide. The metrics are assessed using an Upwelling-Diffusion Energy Balance Model (UDEBM). We focus primarily on the thermosteric part of SLR, denoted GSPth. All of the examined climate forcers – even black carbon, a very Short-Lived Climate Forcer (SLCF) – have considerable influence on the thermosteric SLR on the century time scale. For a given time horizon and forcer, GSPth lies in between the corresponding metric values obtained using Global Warming Potential (GWP) and Global Temperature change Potential (GTP), whereas IGSPth ends up in the opposite end to GTP in the spectrum of compared metrics. GSPth and IGSPth are more sensitive for SLCFs than for the long-lived Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) to changes in the parameterization of the model (under the time horizons considered here).
We also use a Semi-Empirical (SE) model to estimate the full SLR, and corresponding GSPSE and IGSPSE, as alternatives to the thermosteric approach. For SLCFs, GSPSE is greater than GSPth for all time horizons considered, while the opposite holds for long-lived GHGs such as SF6.
KeywordsBlack Carbon Global Warming Potential Emission Pulse Adjustment Time Climate Forcer
We thank Paulina Essunger and two anonymous reviewers for valuable comments. Funding from the Swedish Energy Agency and Carl Bennet AB is gratefully acknowledged.
- Church JA, Clark PU, Cazenave A, et al. (2013) Sea Level Change. In: Climate Change 2013: The physical science basis. Contribution of working group 1 to the fifth assessment report of the IPCC. [Stocker TF, Dahe Q, Plattner G-K, et al.]Google Scholar
- Gill AE (1982) Atmosphere–ocean dynamics. Academic pressGoogle Scholar
- Jones PD, Lister DH, Osborn TJ, et al. (2012) Hemispheric and large-scale land-surface air temperature variations: An extensive revision and an update to 2010. Journal of Geophysical Research: Atmospheres (1984–2012) 117:Google Scholar
- Kriegler E (2005) Imprecise Probability Analysis for Integrated Assessment of Climate Change.Google Scholar
- Levitus S (1982) Climatological atlas of the world ocean. NOAA Prof. Pap. 13:Google Scholar
- Li C, von Storch JS, Marotzke J (2012) Deep-ocean heat uptake and equilibrium climate response. Climate Dynamics 1–16Google Scholar
- Myhre G, Shindell D, Bréon F-M, et al. (2013) Anthropogenic and Natural Radiative Forcing. In: Climate Change 2013: The physical science basis. Contribution of working group 1 to the fifth assessment report of the IPCC. [Stocker TF, Dahe Q, Plattner G-K, et al.]Google Scholar
- Plattner G-K, Stocker T, Midgley P et al (2009) IPCC expert meeting on the science of alternative metrics. Meeting report, IPCC, Geneva (CH)Google Scholar
- Rahmstorf S, Perrette M, Vermeer M (2012) Testing the robustness of semi-empirical sea level projections. Clim Dyn 1–15Google Scholar
- Reisinger A, Meinshausen M, Manning M, Bodeker G (2010) Uncertainties of global warming metrics: CO2 and CH4. Geophysical Research Letters 37:n/a–n/a. doi: 10.1029/2010GL043803
- Schaeffer M, Hare W, Rahmstorf S, Vermeer M (2012) Long-term sea-level rise implied by 1.5 C and 2 C warming levels. Nature Climate ChangeGoogle Scholar
- Shine KP, Derwent RG, Wuebbles DJ, Morcrette JJ (1990) Radiative forcing of climate. In the first assessment report of the IPCC. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom and New York, NY, USAGoogle Scholar
- Wigley TML, Raper SCB (2005) Extended scenarios for glacier melt due to anthropogenic forcing. Geophysical research letters 32:L05704Google Scholar