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Kyoto in 2030: Envisioning 1.5-Degree Lifestyles

  • Published on February 18, 2022

'Kyoto in 2030: Envisioning 1.5-Degree Lifestyles' shares findings of the ‘Envisioning Future Low-Carbon Lifestyles and Transitioning Instruments’ demonstration project, 2019-2021. This project was implemented under the United Nations’ One Planet network and funded by the Government of Japan through its contribution to the 10YFP Trust Fund, administered by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). This project is led by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), Japan, in collaboration with Akatu Institute, Brazil; Chulalongkorn University, Thailand; ICLEI Africa, South Africa; Swechha, India; Hot or Cool Institute, Germany; ICLEI, Japan; Science Communications and Research Institute (SCRI), Japan; D-mat, Finland; National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES), Japan.

This report, Kyoto in 2030, recommends some plausible options for 1.5-Degree Lifestyles and measures to support them. This will put society on a path towards realising the globally unified 1.5-Degree Lifestyles target of 2.5 t-CO2e/ capita/year, which is compatible with the Paris Agreement’s target of limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. Based on the report’s assessment of consumption data across housing, food, mobility, goods, services and leisure, it is calculated that the average lifestyle carbon footprint in Kyoto is currently 7t-CO2e/capita/year, slightly lower than Japan’s national average, but above the global average of 4.3t-CO2e/capita/year.

Reducing the lifestyle carbon footprint from 7t-CO2e/capita/ year to 2.5 t-CO2e/capita/year is only feasible through a combination of measures on both the production and consumption side. This report proposed consumption side measures can reduce Kyoto’s average lifestyle carbon footprint from 7t-CO2e/ capita/year to 3.8t-CO2e/capita/year (-45%), assuming no changes in renewable energy share and no changes in environmental efficiency improvement. The study identified 65-actionable lifestyle change options and estimated their potential to reduce carbon footprint based on consumption amounts and energy intensity for production across the housing, food, mobility, goods, services and leisure domains. 

This report accentuates that a 1.5°C Lifestyle of 2.5 t-CO2e/ capita/year target is very ambitious but can be achieved if all the stakeholders take adequate action in a collaborative manner. It aims to provide ideas for a diverse range of citizens towards realising 1.5°C Lifestyles, while noting that adoption rates are just indicative figures, and are not future projections or targets.

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