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About this Carbon Budgeting Fellowship #CCAC_Fship_DCU [Blogpost 1]

posted 8 Feb 2021, 05:25 by Paul Price

Carbon budget research has profound implications for the national priority of achieving a cost-effective, low carbon transition pathway to 2050, aligned with policy accepting Ireland does its ‘fair-share’ to meet the Paris Agreement and the SDGs. 


Beginning in January 2021, working through Dublin City University, I will be researching and advising on Carbon Budgeting as a Fellow to the Climate Change Advisory Council (CCAC) as funded for a two-year period by EPA Research. For the CCAC, its Secretariat will channel requests to Fellows and provide Steering Groups to support them.  


The DCU Supervisors for my Fellowship research are Prof. Barry McMullin and Dr. Aideen O'Dochartaigh so this will also be very much a team effort. Barry and I have worked on two EPA reports on societal climate mitigation for Ireland, one looking at the potential for negative emissions technologies in the context of CO2-only carbon budgets, and a second report extending our literature review and carbon budget modelling to non-CO2 emissions. Aideen is an Assistant Professor in Accounting at DCU Business School with particular expertise in business-sector sustainability accounting and bioeconomy research.


The exact focus of the Fellowship research over the two years will likely depend on the exact content of the upcoming revision of the 2015 Climate Action and Low Carbon Development Act and the new requirements placed on the CCAC as a result of the legislation and developing Government climate change policies. To inform its advice on climate action the CCAC will be looking to the academically independent advice of the new Fellows to provide evidence-based inputs.


For now my work will focus on the Work Packages set out in the Fellowship as approved for funding under the title Carbon budgets to inform climate action: A society-wide, integrated GHG quota and accounting perspective. The research is divided into four work packages, each covering about six months work: 

1.  Agriculture and land use pathways within society-wide transition;

2.  Integrated carbon budget assessment of existing policy emissions scenarios;

3.  Design and assessment of alternative additional integrated emissions scenarios (including negative emissions and methane mitigation);

4.  Integrating national and business-sector carbon budget accounting.


Extending previous carbon budget, mitigation pathway and carbon accounting research the work packages aims to provide finer grained, sectoral-level research and modelling to help the Council provide stakeholders with essential carbon budget context for effective mitigation action.