By Cameron Chai
A study published in the Environmental Research Letters, a journal of IOP Publishing, indicates that an extreme shift to low carbon-emitting technologies like hydroelectric and wind power might not lead to decrease in global warming till the second half of this century.
In addition, it revealed that technologies such as carbon capture and storage that offer small reductions in greenhouse gases cannot significantly minimize climate risk for the next 100 years.
The study has been performed by researchers from the Carnegie Institution, Stanford and Intellectual Ventures. Researchers have reached their conclusions through a group of simple mathematical models. These models estimated the effect of shifting energy technologies on the concentration of global mean temperature, radiative forcing and greenhouse gases.
According to the research, rapid installation of low-greenhouse-gas-emitting technologies (LGEs) will primarily increase emissions, which will remain in the air for longer period of time as carbon dioxide has a long lifetime.
The team used coal-based power facilities to compare with natural gas, carbon capture and storage, hydroelectric power, nuclear power and wind power. The replacement of coal-based power plants will have a significant advantage on the climate. The research suggests that considerable reduction in temperatures will rely on fast and huge installation of mix of technologies like carbon capture and storage, nuclear, solar and wind.