New UN Report Says Global Warming to Exceed Paris Agreement Limits
A draft of a report from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (I.P.C.C.) says the world is on course to exceed the global warming limits set by the 2015 Paris Agreement.
The Paris Agreement, signed by almost 200 nations, had asked signatories to commit to a goal of limiting global warming to well below a rise of 2°C above pre-industrial times while “pursuing efforts” for the tougher 1.5° goal, as Reuters reported.
Reuters obtained an exclusive copy of the draft report which stated that temperatures are already up 1°C and rising about 0.2°C a decade. “If emissions continue at their present rate, human-induced warming will exceed 1.5°C by around 2040,” according to the report.
The report was part of the Paris Agreement and requested by world leaders. Under President Trump, the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Agreement in 2017, which some say has effectively weakened the agreement. Trump has turned towards more pro-fossil fuel industry policies, to the disappointment of environmentalists.
According to the I.P.C.C. report, global warming can still be controlled if governments around the world are willing to take “rapid and far-reaching” steps to achieve the lesser than 1.5°C increase goal set in the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Ominous Warnings, But Hope
In addition to the environmental repercussions of global warming, the report commented on the potential economic impact of rising temperatures. “Economic growth is projected to be lower at 2°C warming than at 1.5° for many developed and developing countries,” the report said. This is projected to be a result of environmental disasters like floods and droughts. Other concerns mentioned included storm surges, heat waves, crop disease, famine, the spreading of disease and more.
Some hope was outlined in the report, as it gave recommendations for ways to combat climate change. Some of the recommendations included –
- Reducing industrial emissions
- Cutting down on greenhouse emissions
- Eliminating fossil fuels for energy
- Adopting alternative energy sources such as wind, solar and hydro renewable energies
- Planting vast forests to harvest carbon-dioxide from the atmosphere
- Geoengineering, or exploring ways to reduce the intensity of the sun by injecting particles into the atmosphere.
According to Reuters, the draft claimed: “renewable energies, such as wind, solar and hydropower, would have to surge by 60 percent from 2020 levels by 2050 to stay below 1.5°C ‘while primary energy from coal decreases by two-thirds’”.
The report obtained by Reuters is a revision of an earlier I.P.C.C. report. The updated report took into consideration over 25,000 comments from environmental experts and a wider range of scientific literature.
The final draft of the I.P.C.C. report is scheduled for publication in October in South Korea after leading governments have revised and approved the final document.