Climate Change Research ›› 2018, Vol. 14 ›› Issue (5): 529-539.doi: 10.12006/j.issn.1673-1719.2018.064

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A review on the studies of equitable sharing in national mitigation contributions to achieve the Paris Agreement ambitions

Jie LIN1,Yue QI2,Wen-Jia CAI3,Can WANG1()   

  1. 1 School of Environment, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
    2 National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, Beijing 100038, China
    3 Department of Earth System Science, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
  • Received:2018-05-02 Revised:2018-06-11 Online:2018-11-30 Published:2018-09-30


It has been acknowledged that the combined NDCs (Nationally Determined Contributions) are rather insufficient to stay within the emission ranges consistent with goals in the Paris Agreement, and a feasible benchmark is needed to set as a reference to guide the countries to strengthen their national contributions in an equitable manner. This paper systematically reviews the equity principles involved in mitigation efforts sharing, covering four dimensions of fairness, namely, emissions responsibility, economic capability, egalitarianism and sovereignty. Specifically, this paper reviews the research progress and allocation schemes that are based on different equity dimensions or combinations of several dimensions, and further classifies the divergent contradictions in this field into three levels, that is, the choice of fairness dimension, the design of allocation mechanism and the specific parameterizations. It is found that the “equitable allocation references” that were set to guide countries to increase NDC ambitions are still flawed in terms of comprehensiveness, consistency, and objectivity. In particular, those studies based on multi-bibliographic analysis as well as integrated allocation model led by developed countries fail to reflect the concerns of developing countries about “fairness”. This paper, therefore, points out that the research needs and new direction of studies of national contributions sharing in the future: it needs to systematically elaborate the allocation schemes from the perspective of developing countries, and also construct a comprehensive, balanced and objective integrated allocation model, so as to enhance China’s discourse power on this issue. Consequently, it will help China better play its role of contributors and leaders in the process of equitable realization of the temperature objectives in the Paris Agreement.

Key words: Mitigation contributions sharing, Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC), Equity principle, Paris Agreement

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