The global carbon budget is the limited total amount of carbon dioxide, the emission space, that can be released into the atmosphere to meet a certain temperature target. It can be broken down and distributed in time and space, thereby being expressed as local annual carbon budgets.
A carbon budget is then the amount of carbon dioxide, and the associated proposals for a reduction rate to meet this. But the budget also consists of the interpretations of what the Paris Agreement means and the possibility of so-called negative emissions. In itself, it helps to concretize what it means for carbon dioxide to accumulate in the atmosphere, and that CO2 emissions must therefore be viewed from a cumulative perspective.
Kevin Anderson is a pioneer in the work of transforming the global carbon budget to national and local levels and has, among other things, developed a budget for Manchester, Scotland and for England through their Climate Change Act.
In 2017, Järfälla municipality contacted the Climate Leadership (CCL) and wondered if Järfälla could have a carbon dioxide budget calculated (Anderson et al., 2017). When the project was completed, more municipalities and counties contacted CCL and asked to have budgets calculated.
The great interest resulted in the launch in 2018 of a project, Carbon Dioxide Budgets 2020-2040, to calculate budgets for more municipalities, regions and counties. Especially during edition two, but also in recent rounds dialogue has been conducted with participating organizations via email and meetings. The meetings have aimed to adapt the content of the reports to the needs and for the authors to take part in municipal and regional perspectives, knowledge and experiences.
In total, we have now calculated carbon dioxide budgets for about twenty municipalities, regions and counties around Sweden
These reports can be downloaded here.
For more information and links, visit our list of related resources, and our ongoing reflections connected to this theme.