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‘On Thin Ice’: World About To Pass Critical Temperature Threshold, UN Warns

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UN scientists warned on Monday that the world is on its way to passing a critical temperature threshold needed to tackle climate change by the early 2030s – as scientists sound the alarm for drastic cuts in greenhouse gas emissions. They say they are necessary to prevent devastating drought. Heat waves and sea level rise.

important facts

The UN’s intergovernmental panel on climate change warned at a meeting on Monday that within 10 years Earth could exceed the 1.5°C global warming limit set in the 2015 Paris climate accord, with “insufficient” pace of climate action. the resulting.

IPCC scientists warn that reaching this threshold will lead to more frequent and intense droughts and floods, water security issues, damage to the global economy and death, according to IPCC President Hosung Lee.

Li said that to delay the 1.5 °C (2.7 °F) mark, countries need to cut greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 and implement “climate resilient development”, including the development of clean energy, water and air. Needed.

IPCC members also urged countries to halt new coal production, arguing that it should be phased out by 2030 in rich countries and by 2040 in poorer countries.

Inger Andersen, director of the United Nations Environment Program, urged countries to “mitigate the heat” by cutting greenhouse emissions, a decision she called an “absolute no-brainer.”

important quotes

“Humanity is on thin ice, and that ice is melting fast,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned Monday, adding that “our world needs climate action on all fronts — everything, everywhere, all at once.”

tangent line

Li also emphasized that the countries most vulnerable to climate change are often those that contribute the least to its effects. Lee said people living in those countries were 15 times more likely to die from droughts, floods and hurricanes in the past 10 years. In a study published in the journal Climate change Last July, researchers at Dartmouth College found greenhouse gas emissions between 1990 and 2014 in the US and China — the two biggest polluters — caused about $3.6 trillion in damages worldwide.

main background

UN scientists warned in October that global greenhouse gas emissions would increase by about 3 degrees Celsius by the end of the century—a 10.6% increase from 2010 levels, and much higher than the expected 43% reduction by 2030 , which is considered necessary by the IPCC to achieve the target. Paris Climate Agreement. Scientists have attributed increased global temperatures and greenhouse gas emissions to ecological disruption, sea-level rise, more intense and frequent deadly heat waves, as well as stronger storms and droughts.

chief critic

In the US, initiatives aimed at curbing climate change have faced continued resistance from Republicans in Congress, who argue that legislation that hinders oil, coal and natural gas production disenfranchises American workers in the energy industry. There will be loss. Last summer, GOP lawmakers criticized the Inflation Reduction Act, which included $360 billion in climate change measures, including green energy generation. At the time, Republican firebrand Rep. Lauren Boebert (Colo.) slammed the bill for “sacrificing American families on the altar of climate change.” Last June, the Supreme Court halted the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulatory authority over greenhouse gases, ruling in favor of a group of GOP-led states and coal producers that challenged EPA rules to limit greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. Had asked Facing local opposition, the Biden administration approved an $8 billion Alaska oil project last week, despite pleas from environmentalists including former Vice President Al Gore, who called it “recklessly irresponsible.”

Further reading

Greenhouse gas emissions will rise by 10% when they need to be dropped urgently, UN warns (Forbes)

Each emission causes $1.8 trillion in worldwide economic losses over 25 years, study estimates (Forbes)

Supreme Court curbs EPA’s power to control emissions and fight climate change (Forbes)

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