Statistical Methodology

Quantitative assessment of climate change

The Scottish Government has made ambitious targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (mitigation), and is also committed to ensuring that our society and economy are sufficiently robust to withstand the adverse effects of climate change (adaptation). BioSS has been working within the ClimateXChange collaboration to use scientific expertise to advance both the mitigation and adaptation policy agendas.

One such project we have been involved with is an economic evaluation of mitigation options in the agricultural sector. Such options are usually presented via ‘marginal abatement cost curves’ (MACCs), which provide a graphical tool for comparing measures in terms of their total abatement potential and their cost effectiveness. The propagation of uncertainty within the MACCs has been evaluated by repeatedly drawing unknown parameters from statistical distributions, and the results have been used to identify the inputs that make the largest contribution to overall uncertainties.

example of a simulated marginal abatement cost curve An example of a simulated marginal abatement cost curve for agricultural farming within Scotland. The height of each bar indicates the cost of implementing a measure per unit of abatement (negative costs representing savings), whilst the width of each bar indicates the total abatement which can by achieved if that measure were implemented.

Further details from:
Adam Butler

Article date 2013

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