Journal Article

Data-driven Spatial Climate Impact Model User Manual, Version 092023-EPA

Climate Impact Lab (CIL)

Published October 2, 2023


The Climate Impact Lab (CIL) has developed the Data-driven Spatial Climate Impact Model (DSCIM), a robust, empirically-based model for estimating SCGHGs that is grounded in the best available science and economics and is consistent with recommendations set out by the National Academies of Sciences (NASEM). The theory, framework, and implementation of the CIL’s complete approach has been peer-reviewed and is published in Nature and The Quarterly Journal of Economics, with many technical elements, including the construction of empirical damage functions and valuation of uncertain and unequal local impacts, published in our earlier 2017 Science article. In this user manual, we provide an overview of the key components of an implementation of DSCIM, referred to as DSCIM-EPA, for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s September 2022 draft technical report, “Report on the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases: Estimates Incorporating Recent Scientific Advances.”

DSCIM will be an evolving model, continuously updated to include new categories of climate change impacts and incorporate the latest advances in science and economics. The DSCIM-EPA codebase for download and replication of SCGHG values used by EPA is available online at: