Translated Emission Pathways (TEPs): Long-Term Simulations of COVID-19 CO2 Emissions and Thermosteric Sea Level Rise Projections



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Within the scientific community, climate models have been established to relate long-term emission scenarios to their respective environmental response. Although data at high resolutions can be obtained, this research framework is often computationally complex and offers limited readability for the general public. With the COVID-19 pandemic bringing forth a new sense of lifestyle and reduced human activity, the CO2 emission data related to this global event can be used to illustrate the context of climate science to a broader audience. This study proposes a series of translated emission pathways (TEPs) that consist of CO2 emission patterns from the various phases of COVID-19 response and demonstrate a resemblance to the forcing scenarios utilized within climate research. A simple climate model and radiative forcing expression are used to parameterize the CO2 emission data from the TEPs to its respective atmospheric conditions. Thermosteric sea level rise is used as a metric of environmental impact to highlight the differences between the TEPs. By referencing the COVID-19 pandemic and establishing a linear research framework, this study introduces climate research to the general public and serves as a call to action for environmental responsibility


© 2022. The Authors. Earth's Future published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of American Geophysical Union. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Emissions, COVID-19, Sea level rise, Climate change, Radiative forcing, Science communication


Gonzalez, A. R., & Lin, T. (2022). Translated emission pathways (TEPs): Long-term simulations of COVID-19 CO2 emissions and thermosteric sea level rise projections. Earth's Future, 10, e2021EF002453.