- National pledges on emission reduction, made by countries from across the globe under the Paris Agreement, will only bring a third of what is needed to avoid worst impact of climate change, says a report of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
- Released in Geneva in Nov 2017, the report notes that even full implementation of current unconditional and conditional national climate actions makes a temperature increase of at least 3 degree Celsius by 2100.
- This is meaning that the governments need to deliver much stronger pledges when they are revised in 2020.
- The Paris Agreement, approved by 195 countries in December, 2015, aims to limit global warming to under 2 degree Celsius, with a more ambitious goal of 1.5 degree Celsius also on table.
- The countries had, therefore, pledged to take their voluntary climate actions including emission reduction through multiple measures to meet the target.
- It is expected that meeting these targets would reduce the likelihood of severe climate impacts that could damage human health, livelihoods and economies across the globe.
- The UNEP report has, however, found that these pledges would only bring a third of the reduction in emissions required by 2030 to meet climate targets.
- It, therefore, pitched for an urgent need to increase the ambition by both governments and non-state actors.
About UNEP Emission Gap Report:
- The report – UNEP’s Emission Gap Report – was released just days ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference (COP23) in Bonn where the member countries including India will during November 6-17 Conference discuss guidelines to implement actions under the Paris Agreement which had come into force in November last year.
- The Emission Gap Report finds that current Paris pledges make 2030 emissions likely to reach 11 to 13.5 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (GtCO2e) above the level needed to stay on the least-cost path to meeting the 2 degree Celsius target.
- One gigatonne is roughly equivalent to one year of transport emissions in the European Union (including aviation).
- The emission gap in the case of the 1.5 degree Celsius target is 16 to 19 GtCO2e.
The report claims that the carbon dioxide emissions have remained stable since 2014, driven in part by renewable energy, notably in China and India.
- However, it warns that other greenhouse gases, such as methane, are still rising and a global economic growth spurt could easily put CO2 emissions back on an upward trajectory.