A Jezeque et al., “Behind the vil of extreme event attribution”

"Since Allen (Nature 421(6926):891–892, 2003)’s seminal article, the community of extreme event attribution (EEA) has grown to maturity. Several approaches have been developed: the main ones are the “risk-based approach” — estimating how the probability of event occurrence correlates with climate change — and the “storyline approach” — evaluating the influence of climate change on thermodynamic processes leading to the event. In this article, we map the ways to frame attribution used in a collection of 105 case studies from five BAMS (Bulletin of American Meteorological Society) special issues on extreme events. In order to do so, we propose to define EEA, based on two corpora of interviews conducted with researchers working in the field, as follows: EEA is the ensemble of scientific ways to interpret the question “was this event influenced by climate change?” and answer it. In order to break down the subtleties of EEA, we decompose this initial question into three main problems a researcher has to deal with when framing an EEA case study. First, one needs to define the event of interest. Then, one has to propose a way to link the extreme event with climate change, and the subsequent level of conditioning to parameters of interest. Finally, one has to determine how to represent climate change. We provide a complete classification of BAMS case studies according to those three problems."

in Climatic Change (forthcoming)

O Dilling & T Markus, “The Transnationalisation of Environmental Law”

“This article outlines a critical approach to the emerging discourse of transnational environmental law. It highlights how transboundary activities and organisational structures increasingly shape environmental law, and how legal discourse interprets these developments. In particular, the article unpacks the manifold transnational regulatory structures and explains their interactions with state-made environmental law. It also discusses the legal quality and constitutional issues of transnational norms and analyses the added scientific value of the concept of transnational environmental law. We argue that transnational norms governing the use of public goods are generally not binding on third parties. Accordingly, they have to be ‘re-embedded’ into well-established political and legal processes. In other words, these norms and mechanisms have to be complemented, endorsed or limited by formal legal structures to become a legitimate part of environmental law.” Journal of Environmental Law, Volume 30, Issue 2, 1 July 2018, Pages 179–206

G Iacobuta, “National climate change mitigation legislation, strategy and targets: a global update”

Climate Policy (forthcoming) “Global climate change governance has changed substantially in the last decade, with a shift in focus from negotiating globally agreed greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets to nationally determined contributions, as enshrined in the 2015 Paris Agreement. This paper analyses trends in adoption of national climate legislation and strategies, GHG targets, and renewable and energy efficiency targets in almost all UNFCCC Parties, focusing on the period from 2007 to 2017. The uniqueness and added value of this paper reside in its broad sweep of countries, the more than decade-long coverage and the use of objective metrics rather than normative judgements. Key results show that national climate legislation and strategies witnessed a strong increase in the first half of the assessed decade, likely due to the political lead up to the Copenhagen Climate Conference in 2009, but have somewhat stagnated in recent years, currently covering 69% of global GHG emissions (almost 50% of countries). In comparison, the coverage of GHG targets increased considerably in the run up to adoption of the Paris Agreement and 93% of global GHG emissions are currently covered by such targets. Renewable energy targets saw a steady spread, with 79% of the global GHG emissions covered in 2017 compared to 45% in 2007, with a steep increase in developing countries.”

Jochen Hinkel et al, “The ability of societies to adapt to twenty-first-century sea-level rise”

“Against the background of potentially substantial sea-level rise, one important question is to what extent are coastal societies able to adapt? This question is often answered in the negative by referring to sinking islands and submerged megacities. Although these risks are real, the picture is incomplete because it lacks consideration of adaptation. This Perspective explores societies’ abilities to adapt to twenty-first-century sea-level rise by integrating perspectives from coastal engineering, economics, finance and social sciences, and provides a comparative analysis of a set of cases that vary in terms of technological limits, economic and financial barriers to adaptation and social conflicts.”
in Nature Climate Change (2018)