Global Emissions Gap Widens Despite Climate Efforts — UN


The pages of the report contain the most up-to-date assessment of global greenhouse gas emissions combining the latest research collated and assessed by an worldwide team of leading scientists.

However, gas emissions can be reduced by raising the efficiency of energy use according to the NCA4.

The increase in 2017 follows relatively stable global emissions from 2014 through 2016, a period that allowed for optimism that global greenhouse gas emissions may be peaking.

A reported draft version of a communique being formulated by leaders of the G20 in advance of the 13th meeting of Group of Twenty to be held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, starting Friday, fails to back the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement and makes no mention of the publication of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C which warned that "Limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society".

The EU, whose 28 members together form one of the world's biggest and hence most polluting economies, is keen to play its part and become the first major world player to be "climate neutral".

Emissions are projected to grow with the growth of populations and economies, so under the current Paris promises, the world is running simply to stand still.

The Unep report was compiled by an global team of researchers that evaluated this according to its own information of all the available scientific studies on climate change.

The UN released its annual Emissions Gap Report ahead of the UN climate conference due to take place in Poland next month (December 2-14).

This year's report shows the largest gap ever, resulting from increasing emissions and slow action to mitigate. Some promising signs have surfaced from the private sectors, making investment in renewable energy and other technology to cut down carbon emissions.

The Prime Minister's office referred the ABC to the Environment Minister.

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According to a new United Nations report, governments and industry will need to increase their emissions reduction efforts five-fold to limit global warming to a manageable degree and stave off the more dire impacts of climate change.

Current global emissions were 53.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents a year ago; if all countries live up to all promises made in Paris, they would also be about 53 billion tonnes in 2030.

But to be on track to keep warming below 2C, UN Environment estimates that emissions need to be down to about 40 gigatonnes per annum by that time.

UN Environment deputy executive director Joyce Msuya said: "If the IPCC report represented a global fire alarm, this report is the arson investigation".

'If the emissions gap is not closed by 2030, it is very plausible that the goal of a well below 2C temperature rise increase is also out of reach, ' the report said.

After a three-year plateau, emissions rose in 2017. "So we're leaving that safe operating zone and we're going into a new area we've never been before", said Professor Newman, who was a contributing author on the 2018 IPCC report.

"That's an terrible lot of water to heat and that [energy] has got to go somewhere - it goes into storms and ... more extreme weather events". In other words, by that year, the European Union (EU) should have cut its Carbon dioxide emissions to the maximum and "compensated" for any remaining emissions by investing in projects to reduce greenhouse gases.

"The kind of drastic, large-scale action we urgently need has yet to been seen", said UNEP.

"The broadscale expansion of solar PV and batteries and wind, which continues at pace, is actually pulling back on that [upward emissions] trajectory", he said.

"We are already seeing the impact of just one degree of warming - with communities across the globe ravaged by fire, floods and storms like never before".