A shared effort is needed to mitigate climate change. No one-size-fits-all solution exists for decarbonisation.
The EU-funded PLEDGES project provides policymakers with a novel modelling tool to manage Member States’ carbon budgets, enabling them to assess and compensate carbon budgets across the EU-27 countries, in compliance with the objectives of the European Green Deal.
ARU's Dr Ilaria Perissi explains what modelling is, and how it can help us understand complex systems such as climate.
ARU's Dr Ilaria Perissi takes us through a model that helps us understand the various, interconnected influences on Earth's climate.
ARU's Dr Ilaria Perissi discusses how we can use models to explore the future path of climate change.
Each EU country has different barriers and opportunities for decarbonisation. However, these potentialities are neither exploited nor explored by the current EU Green Deal (EU climate neutrality by 2050) objectives, or by the long-term mitigation targets established under the United Nations Conference of the Parties (COP) agreements – in particular, the Paris Agreement, which pledged to keep the temperature increase below 2°C.
Current policies mainly focus on emission reduction targets and do not consider cumulative emissions or the speed at which the transition to lower carbon can be achieved. Considering these factors is critical to the success of policies that can achieve the temperature goal.
The PLEDGES model aims to fill this gap, providing EU policymakers with a tool able to downscale EU and world climate mitigation policy to national levels. It will set a European carbon budget and allocate an allowance of carbon emissions to each EU region, country, or even person, according to a set of eligibility criteria based on an effort-sharing approach.
Once a potential carbon budget for each Member State is calculated, the PLEDGES tool will be able to simulate deviations from the assumed national quotas and evaluate how those deviations impact on the other member states. PLEDGES will help policymakers evaluate accurately the shared effort needed to mitigate climate change.
PLEDGES configures as a highly interdisciplinary tool, helping to design mitigation actions under a holistic view that considers topics in scientific, economic, and social spheres, including the role of gender.
Designing policies with a lack of gender knowledge might result in a lack of support from significant parts of society for innovative mitigation methods and solutions. PLEDGES will take into account those aspects by gathering and analysing gender-disaggregated data.
Perissi, I., Armenia, S., Pasqualino, R. and Csala, D. (2023) 'Special Issue “From COP 26 to COP 27: Contributions of Systems Approaches to Address the Challenges Ahead”: An Editorial Commentary', Sustainability, 15, 13519. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3390/su151813519
Perissi, I. and Jones, A. (2023) 'Influence of Economic Decoupling in Assessing Carbon Budget Quotas for the European Union', Carbon Management,, 14, 2217423. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/17583004.2023.2217423
Perissi, I. and Jones, A. (2023) 'PLEDGES Model: An Innovative Tool to Manage Carbon Budget across the EU27 Member States', 11th Simulation Workshop, pp. 150–161.
Perissi, I. and Jones, A. (2022) 'Investigating European Union Decarbonization Strategies: Evaluating the Pathway to Carbon Neutrality by 2050', Sustainability, 14, 4728. Available at: https://doi.org/10.3390/su14084728
Director, Global Sustainability Institute
Marie Curie International Fellow