IPCC 2021 impact categories

IPCC 2021 is available with a full a Ecoinvent license

Updated over a week ago

The IPCC 2021 impact categories are available for users with a full Ecoinvent license.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change impact method (IPCC 2021)

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the United Nations' body for assessing the science related to climate change. The IPCC provides a regular assessments of the scientific basis of climate change, its impacts and future risks, and options for adaptation and mitigation.

The IPCC 2021 impact method follows the latest guidelines for the quantification of greenhouse gas emissions from the 6th assessment report (AR6), dated from 2021.

IPCC 2021 impact categories

List of the IPCC 2021 impact categories units and their description.

In Earthster the available IPCC categories include the short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs), following the Life-cycle initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommendation for their use in sensitivity analyses of models. The included SLCFs are not a part of the AR6 GHG impact categories.

Impact category

Unit

Description

Default (GWP100), Aircraft

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 100 year time horizon, accounting solely for aircraft emissions (upper troposphere/lower stratosphere emissions).

Default (GWP100), Biogenic

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 100 year time horizon, accounting solely for biogenic emissions (emissions of Methane from a non-fossil, non-land use, non-land use change origin).

Default (GWP100), Fossil

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 100 year time horizon, accounting solely for fossil emissions.

Default (GWP100), Land use

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 100 year time horizon, accounting solely for land use emissions.

Default (GWP100), Total

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) measured at a 100-year time horizon. This impact category considers emissions from biogenic, fossil, and land use sources.

GWP20, Aircraft

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 20 year time horizon, accounting solely for aircraft emissions (upper troposphere/lower stratosphere emissions).

GWP20, Biogenic

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 20 year time horizon, accounting solely for biogenic emissions (emissions of Methane from a non-fossil, non-land use, non-land use change origin).

GWP20, Fossil

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 20 year time horizon, accounting solely for fossil emissions.

GWP20, Land use

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 20 year time horizon, accounting solely for land use emissions.

GWP20, Total

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) measured at a 20-year time horizon. This impact category considers emissions from biogenic, fossil, and land use sources.

GWP500, Aircraft

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 500 year time horizon, accounting solely for aircraft emissions (upper troposphere/lower stratosphere emissions).

GWP500, Biogenic

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 500 year time horizon, accounting solely for biogenic emissions (emissions of Methane from a non-fossil, non-land use, non-land use change origin).

GWP500, Fossil

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 500 year time horizon, accounting solely for fossil emissions.

GWP500, Land use

kg CO2 eq

Global warming potential (GWP) measured at a 500 year time horizon, accounting solely for land use emissions.

GWP500, Total

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) measured at a 500-year time horizon. This impact category considers emissions from biogenic, fossil, and land use sources.

Including SLCFs, default (GWP100), Aircraft

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 100-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for aircraft emissions (upper troposphere/lower stratosphere emissions). Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, default (GWP100), Biogenic

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 100-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for biogenic emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, default (GWP100), Fossil

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 100-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for fossil emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, default (GWP100), Land use

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 100-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for land use emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, default (GWP100), Total

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 100-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation considers emissions from biogenic, fossil, and land use sources. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, GWP20, Aircraft

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 20-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for aircraft emissions (upper troposphere/lower stratosphere emissions). Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, GWP20, Biogenic

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 20-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for biogenic emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, GWP20, Fossil

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 20-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for fossil emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, GWP20, Land use

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 20-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation accounts solely for land use emissions. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Including SLCFs, GWP20, Total

kg CO2 eq

Global Warming Potential (GWP) calculated over a 20-year time horizon, encompassing the influence of short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). This calculation considers emissions from biogenic, fossil, and land use sources. Characterization factors for SLCFs have been sourced from the IPCC method within ecoinvent, and these factors are rooted in the IPCC 2013 report. While SLCFs are not part of the IPCC's 2021 metrics, the Life-cycle Initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their inclusion in sensitivity analyses of models.

Viewing the IPCC 2021 impact categories

Follow these instructions to learn how to view other impact categories.

The IPCC and ISO-14067 compliance

The IPCC impact method is useful when compiling a product report that is ISO-14067 compliant, because:

  • it uses the characterization factors from the latest IPCC report (AR6)

  • it uses the recommended global warming potential (GWP) at a 100 year time scale as the default impact category, still allowing for other timescales to be used; and

  • it discriminates between fossil, biogenic, land-use and land use change emissions, as well as aircraft emissions.

Note that to be fully ISO-14067 compliant, the study report should also meet the other ISO requirements, for example the accounting of all stages of a product's life cycle (production, distribution, use and end of life - ), and electricity GHG emissions (refer to the ISO-14067 here)

Short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs)

SLCFs are GHGs whose impact is strongest in the short term (20 years), after which most of which has been transformed into more stable, less climate-change-inducing gases. For example, the SLCF Carbon monoxide tends to undergo oxidation to form carbon dioxide (CO2) in the presence of oxygen (O2), reducing its global warming potential at least 9 times.

In Earthster the IPCC optionally includes short-lived climate forcers (SLCFs). Although the SLCFs are not a part of the AR6 GHGs, the Life-cycle initiative (UNEP/SETAC 2016) recommends their use in sensitivity analyses of models.

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