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Technological options are critical for economic viability of 2°C climate target

03/15/2010 - Tapping renewable energy sources, capturing and storing of industrial emissions of carbon dioxide and improving energy efficiency are pivotal for holding the increase in global temperature below two degrees Celsius. In a special issue of “The Energy Journal”, a team of researchers of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and four other European institutions reports that atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases can be stabilized at correspondingly low levels at moderate costs. However, costs, as well as the dependency on specific technologies, increase with the chances to achieve the 2°C target.
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Weakening Sun would hardly slow global warming

03/10/2010 - A new Grand Minimum of solar activity would decrease the rise of global mean temperature caused by human greenhouse gas emissions only marginally. A new modelling study by researchers of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, published online today in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, finds a temperature offset of at most 0.3 degrees Celsius until the end of the century. This is less than ten percent of the temperature rise projected under “business as usual” scenarios of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
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Light-based computing, quick as a thought

02/24/2010 - Inspired by the fast processing of information in the human brain, a consortium of European research institutions is developing a novel kind of computing. The EU funded project “PHOCUS” that started in January aims at designing photonic systems, communicating via light, to quickly perform complex computations including the rapid processing of large amounts of data, potentially consuming far less power than current supercomputers.
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Stefan Rahmstorf elected Fellow of the American Geophysical Union

02/17/2010 - As a “special tribute for exceptional scientific contributions”, Stefan Rahmstorf of the Potsdam-Institute for Climate Impact Research was elected Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU). The honorary fellowship is bestowed on only one in each thousand members in any given year, who have attained “acknowledged eminence in the Earth and space sciences”.
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New book rises to the global sustainability challenge

02/08/2010 - In the wake of the Copenhagen climate conference, which ended without a clear mandate for global climate protection, the new book Global Sustainability - A Nobel Cause, published by Cambridge University Press, addresses the main lines of conflicts and offers new solutions. The contributing authors - Nobel laureates in physics, chemistry, medicine, economics and peace, top-level political leaders, representatives of major NGOs and renowned experts on sustainability - point out strategies for the stabilisation of the climate and global sustainable development. The open access publication is now available for download.
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Ambitions of only two developed countries sufficiently stringent for 2°C

2010/02/03 - Only 2 out of 10 developed countries’ reduction targets submitted to the Copenhagen Accord qualify as ‘sufficient’ to keep global temperature rise below 2°C, finds the update of the ’Climate Action Tracker´. The reduction targets of all countries currently associated with the Accord are not consistent with the 2°C goal defined in the very same Accord. The current pledges leave the world heading for a global warming of over 3°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100.
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PIK devises climate strategy for Potsdam

01/19/2010 - A consortium of institutes and companies led by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) is to develop a strategy for climate protection for the City of Potsdam. The Mayor of Potsdam, capital of the German state of Brandenburg, Jann Jakobs, today entrusted the consortium with devising concepts for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to climate change up to 2050. Following the sobering outcome of the world climate conference in Copenhagen, the engagement of cities, companies and private persons in reduction and adaptation issues appears to be especially important.
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PIK will be leading member of Climate Initiative of European Institute of Innovation and Technology

Budapest/Potsdam, 12/16/2009 - The European Union´s Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) announced today its Knowledge and Innovation Community (‘Climate-KIC’), a cluster of 16 highly integrated partnerships, bringing together excellent higher education, research and business around the topics of climate change mitigation and adaptation. The Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) is one of its five major academic partners and will lead the German consortium. Among its members are the Berlin Institute of Technology, the Technische Universität München and the German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam. The Klima Campus Hamburg and the Forschungszentrum Jülich also joined prior to the implementation of the initiative.
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Emissions cut of 40% below 1990 levels by 2020 needed for industrial countries for 2°C limit

12/15/2009 - Authors of the landmark 2009 climate report “The Copenhagen Diagnosis” estimate that by 2020 industrial nations must reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by around 40% below 1990 levels to secure a decent chance of avoiding dangerous human interference with the climate system.
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Intelligent transfer of information on climate protection and adaptation options - PIK and GTZ present climate information service

12/12/2009 - In the light of the UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) together with the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) presented a preview of its climate service “ci:grasp” (Climate Impacts: Global and Regional Adaptation Support Platform) last thursday. “The central idea behind our platform is to develop a science-based tool to support decision making on adaptation to climate impacts at the regional level,” says Jürgen Kropp, Head of the North-South research group at PIK, which is developing the ci:grasp platform. The methodological approach guarantees higher efficiency of financial investments into adaptation measures as they can be focused and their effects be maximized.
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