EGU General Assembly 2022
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Sharing the burden of carbon dioxide removal 

Claire Fyson1, Gaurav Ganti1,2, and Carl-Friedrich Schleussner1,2
Claire Fyson et al.
  • 1Climate Analytics, Berlin, Germany
  • 2Geography Faculty, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany

The exercise of translating a global carbon budget into other policy-relevant metrics, for instance, global and regional emission pathways over time is, unavoidably laden with value judgements, raising questions around inter- and intra-generational equity. As net zero targets are increasingly adopted by countries around the world, clarifying their adequacy from a perspective of fairness is essential. Given significant delays in reducing emissions globally, achieving net zero emissions will require the deployment of carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies. Recent studies have started to apply equity-based indicators to assess how emission removal obligations could be shared between countries contrasting the resulting distribution of CDR deployment with cost-optimal distributions produced by Integrated Assessment Models. The choice of framework used to share CDR between countries in Paris Agreement compatible pathways - whether based on principles of equity or a least-cost approach - has implications for how these pathways are used to inform CDR governance and policy. This includes how they are used to evaluate targets for achieving net zero (and even net negative) emissions and the CDR assumptions that underlie them, as well as to assess which CDR technologies should be developed and how they should be financed. 

Here we will explore the principles of equity and justice that can be considered relevant to CDR deployment in the context of the Paris Agreement. Drawing examples from recent analysis (Fyson et al. 2020, Lee et al. 2021), we will look at how such principles could be applied quantitatively to evaluate national targets and policies. In doing so we will highlight the importance of applying an equity and justice lens when developing Paris Agreement compatible emission reduction and removal strategies.


Fyson, C. L., Baur, S., Gidden, M. & Schleussner, C. F. Fair-share carbon dioxide removal increases major emitter responsibility. Nat. Clim. Chang. 10, 836–841 (2020).

Lee, K., Fyson, C. & Schleussner, C. Fair distributions of carbon dioxide removal obligations and implications for effective national net-zero targets. Environ. Res. Lett. 16, (2021).

How to cite: Fyson, C., Ganti, G., and Schleussner, C.-F.: Sharing the burden of carbon dioxide removal , EGU General Assembly 2022, Vienna, Austria, 23–27 May 2022, EGU22-11780,, 2022.