Short-lived climate pollutants lead to poor air quality and contribute significantly to global warming, making them crucial targets for global environmental governance.The brand-new book Reducing Emissions of Short-Lived Climate Pollutants: Perspectives from Law and Governance
(Brill, 2023) edited by Associate Professor Yulia Yamineva
, Professor Kati Kulovesi
and Postdoctoral Researcher Eugenia Recio
at the Law School of the University of Eastern Finland provides the first comprehensive analysis of how this problem has been addressed so far and draws relevant lessons for the future of global climate policy.
Short-lived climate pollutants include substances like methane, black carbon and tropospheric ozone. These have long been known to be contributors to air pollution, one of the main threats to public health, and are also increasingly in the focus of global climate science, including in the IPCC’s influential assessments. This is because their mitigation not only brings significant health benefits but can also slow down global warming in the near term, as their lifetime in the atmosphere is much shorter than that of carbon dioxide (CO2) while their warming potential is often higher. Indeed, it is believed that the global goal of limiting warming to 1.5°C cannot be reached without significantly reducing the emissions of short-lived climate pollutants in addition to reducing the emissions of CO2.
The book is the result of an innovative collaboration between atmospheric scientists at the Department of Technical Physics and legal scholars at the Law School, all working under the University of Eastern Finland’s research community on Climate Forcing, Ecosystems and Health, CLEHE. The diverse array of book contributors delves into the science and evolution of the concept of short-lived climate pollutants, analyses political and legal responses to it, and provides specific examples of what has been done to tackle them in sectors like transport, shipping, and oil and gas.
The book is published in open access, freely available to anyone who is interested on the Brill website.