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World heading for catastrophe without bolder climate plans, UN warns

World heading for catastrophe without bolder climate plans, UN warns
Planned emissions cuts will only take an extra 7.5% off global emissions, when cuts of 55% are needed

The world is way off course from averting climate disaster, e países’ new commitments to cutting greenhouse gas emissões – unveiled ahead of the Cop26 climate summit – “fall far short” of what is required to reach net zero by 2050, a UMA has warned.

With just days to go before the critical summit, the UN Environment Programme has found countries’ updated “nationally determined contributions” or NDCs – which set out the level of carbon emissions cuts they are planning – only take a further 7.5 per cent off projected global emissions for 2030, while cuts of 55 per cent are needed to meet the 1.5C Paris meta.

Reductions of 30 per cent are needed to stay “well below” 2C of warming – a less ambitious target also set out under the Paris agreement.

The promises for 2030 put the world on course for a temperature rise this century of at least 2.7C, with UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres saying less than a week before the talks that the findings were a “thundering wake-up call”, and the world is “still on track for climate catastrophe”, as the agency urged countries to “redouble their climate efforts if they are to prevent disastrous global heating in the future”.

The success or failure of humanity’s efforts to tackle the crise climatica largely depend on how quickly states enact legislation to curb greenhouse gas emissions generated by burning fossil fuels, but according to the new UNEP report, chamado Emissions Gap Report 2021: The Heat Is On, not enough action is planned.

“We know that humanity’s future depends on keeping global temperature increase to 1.5C by 2030,” Mr Guterres said.

“We also know that, até aqui, parties to the Paris Agreement are utterly failing to keep this target within reach.”

“The clock is ticking. The emissions gap is the result of a leadership gap. But leaders can still make this a turning point to a greener future instead of a tipping point to climate catastrophe.”

Ele adicionou: “The era of half measures and hollow promises must end. The time for closing the leadership gap must begin in Glasgow.”

However the report said further introduction of net-zero pledges could help make a big difference and if fully implemented could bring the predicted global temperature rise to 2.2C above the pre-industrial era.

They said this finding provides “hope that further action could still head off the most-catastrophic impacts of climate change”

But they warned that countries’ existing net-zero pledges remain “vague, incomplete in many cases, and inconsistent with most 2030 NDCs”.

“Climate change is no longer a future problem. It is a now problem,” said Inger Andersen, the executive director of UNEP.

“To stand a chance of limiting global warming to 1.5C, we have eight years to almost halve greenhouse gas emissions: eight years to make the plans, put in place the policies, implement them and ultimately deliver the cuts.

“The clock is ticking loudly.”

As of 30 setembro 2021, 120 países, representing just over half of global greenhouse gas emissions, had communicated new or updated NDCs. Além disso, three G20 members have announced other new mitigation pledges for 2030, the UNEP said.

Um total de 49 countries plus the EU have pledged a net-zero target. This accounts for more than half of global domestic greenhouse gas emissions, over half of GDP and a third of the global population. Of these targets, 11 of them are enshrined in law, covering just 12 per cent of global emissions.

The UNEP report warned that though 12 G20 members have pledged a net-zero target, they are “highly ambiguous”.

“The world has to wake up to the imminent peril we face as a species,” Ms Andersen said.

“Nations need to put in place the policies to meet their new commitments, and start implementing them within months. They need to make their net-zero pledges more concrete, ensuring these commitments are included in NDCs, and action brought forward. They then need to get the policies in place to back this raised ambition and, novamente, start implementing them urgently.

“It is also essential to deliver financial and technological support to developing nations – so that they can both adapt to the impacts of climate change already here and set out on a low-emissions growth path.”

Despite the suggestion that net-zero pledges could help shift the world towards greater levels of decarbonisation, some academics remain sceptical that Cop summits can deliver the emissions cuts required.

Insanity is keeping doing the same thing in the hope of getting a different outcome. On current progress, we’ll close the 2030 emissions gap sometime in the 2080s

Myles Allen, professor of geosystem science at the University of Oxford

Responding to the report, Myles Allen, a professor of geosystem science at the University of Oxford, disse: “Insanity is keeping doing the same thing in the hope of getting a different outcome. On current progress, we’ll close the 2030 emissions gap sometime in the 2080s.

“There is no appetite for reducing fossil fuel consumption globally at the rate required to meet our climate goals. The only remaining option is to scale up safe and permanent disposal of carbon dioxide, such as by storing it back underground, instead of fly-tipping it into the atmosphere.”

Ele adicionou: “We currently dispose of less than 0.1 per cent of the carbon dioxide we generate. This needs to be at 10 por cento por 2030 to be on track for 100 por cento por 2050. This is the gap that matters, and they won’t even be talking about it in Glasgow.”

Dr Joeri Rogelj from the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London, and lead author of two chapters of the report, disse: “This is the first time the UNEP Emissions Gap Report dedicates a full chapter to net-zero targets. Its verdict is mixed. On the one hand, if implemented, current net zero targets would lower temperature projections by for the next century by about half a degree – bringing central estimates close to 2C – yet still not in line with holding global warming well below 2C, let alone 1.5C.

“On the other hand, the report also highlights that in many cases countries’ near-term targets are not yet putting emissions a clear track towards achieving their net-zero goals. This casts doubt on whether these targets will ever be achieved. Countries can reduce these doubts by stepping up and moving from targets, to strategies, plans, and policies, that deliver the net-zero ambitions on the ground.”