Joe Biden Climate Meeting The Leaders’ Summit on Climate Change appears to be a success. Host country the United States of America doubles down on its climate promise. South Korea, the world’s third largest coal financier, has pledged to halt funding for new coal projects. The European Union, Japan, the United Kingdom and Canada have tightened their emissions targets significantly in recent days.
A new analysis from Climate Action Tracker now shows that the world has taken a historic step forward on climate action – never before had the world’s ambitions increased sharply in a few days.
The promises are consistent with reducing emissions of 2.6-3.7 billion tons of carbon dioxide by 2030 – or at least fifty times Sweden’s annual emissions, according to Climate Action Tracker.
We might not have seen anything like it in the past few days, says Bill Hare of Climate Action Tracker.
In particular, it highlights the United States’ promise. According to the analysis, no administration has ever taken such a major climate move as the Biden administration did on Thursday. According to some analyzes, the US climate ambitions are now greater than those of the European Union, although it is difficult to compare as countries have different starting years for their emissions targets – the US will decrease by 50-52 percent versus the 2005 level, while it will decrease The European Union is up 55 percent compared to the 1990 level.
But despite breaking records Success, the world is still very far from fulfilling its promises in the Paris Agreement. By 2030, emissions must be cut by up to tenfold, so that the world can reduce global warming to 1.5 degrees, according to calculations by the Climate Action Tracker.
– The big gap still exists. And emissions are increasing rapidly now, says Bill Hare – and points to them analyzing From the International Energy Agency (IEA), which shows that emissions are expected to increase by 5 percent this year through 2020.
And with big strides in some places, there are many emissions giants who have yet to come up with any further ambition. In their speeches during the meeting, Russian President Putin and Brazilian Bolsonaro did not talk about curbing their emissions, but about how nature in their countries contributed to absorbing carbon dioxide. Brazil has been directly opposed to the global trend – and has instead played down its ambitions in recent months, according to the Climate Action Tracker analysis.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has also not promised tougher emissions cuts, but has focused on technical solutions to capture carbon dioxide, something Putin also mentioned in his speech.
In turn, the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, stressed the pressure the Corona pandemic is exerting on the country, but the climate crisis is also a reality that requires action. He noted that in India, per capita carbon dioxide emissions are 60 per cent lower than the global average depending on the traditional lifestyle.
Moody said he demonstrates how important a changing lifestyle is in combating the climate crisis.
The largest emitter in the worldChina, however, has made no promises to cut emissions – however, President Xi Jinping has made concrete plans to phase out coal energy, Bill Hare notes.
– He says that emissions from coal energy will peak in 2025 and reduce them over the next five years, but indicates that China will need to do more for the world to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.
Despite tremendous strides forward in recent days, few countries have increased their ambitions overall. The rest of the G20 should get their promises right – and China should and can do more, he says.
The big gap that the meeting failed to bridge – and which observers see as crucial for emissions giants like India to agree to increase their ambitions – is climate financing in poor countries. The wealthy part of the world has not kept its promise to provide $ 100 billion annually into the United Nations Green Climate Fund, which is part of the Paris Agreement. The fund finances climate change and adaptation in poor countries.
There is also a lack of appropriate liabilities when it comes to fossil fuel financing. Although South Korea has promised to stop financing new coal power – other major coal financiers such as Japan and China have said nothing of similar plans. Osa Pearson, head of research at the Stockholm Environment Institute, SEI, notes that the world immediately needs to stop investing and subsidizing fossil fuels in order to have a chance to meet the 1.5-point Paris Agreement target.
Our research shows that there is a duplication of investment in climate change, for example with the electrification of the transport sector, while continuing to support the production of fossil fuels. It says it undermines other investments.
According to the UN report there are researchers From the SEI concerned, things go in the wrong direction when it comes to extracting fossil fuels. If we are to meet the climate targets, production must be reduced by 6 percent annually. But countries of the world still plan to increase production by the next ten years, by about 2 percent annually.
She also indicated that the massive financial support that followed the Corona pandemic has gone little to the regions that contribute to climate change.
– Many countries are still using economic stimulus packages after Corona to support the fossil fuel sector, as we again have this duality, she said.
But despite the shortcomings, most observers seem to agree that the Joe Biden climate summit gave global climate action a real boost. Johan Koelnsterna, chair of the Climate Policy Board, thinks another major benefit of the meeting is that it sends a clear signal to the global economy.
70 percent of the global economy now already has common goals. This is the direction we’re headed – now the business community knows it, which means the entire economy is going to change, he says.
He also notes that although countries such as Brazil and Russia made no promises, they were present at the meeting – and it cannot be denied that they feel an increasing pressure to actually act.
We have to be realistic, too. The only way to engage countries is to stay all the time. One has to understand the dynamics of international politics in this, and not get caught up in whether or not they make concrete promises.
But is it sufficient for the world to achieve the goal of 1.5 degrees?
No, it is not that we are on the right track to achieving the climate goals that we have set. But it’s moving really fast now – and it’s going faster and faster.
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