Climate Change 2001:
Working Group II: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability
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Figure 19-1: Global mean temperature change (from 1990) as a function of CO2 concentration for SRES scenarios. For any given CO2 level, uncertainties in temperature arise through several factors. The three most important are accounted for here: First, different temperatures for a given future CO2 level may arise because each emissions scenario has different levels of other GHGs and different levels of SO2 emissions—factors that lead to a range of possible non-CO2 forcings (results here consider all six SRES illustrative scenarios); second, different temperatures arise because of uncertainties in climate sensitivity (three values—1.5, 2.5, and 4.5ºC equilibrium warming for a CO2 doubling—are used here); and third, different temperatures arise because different rates of radiative forcing change and different climate sensitivities lead to different levels of damping of the instantaneous equilibrium response.

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