Report: multiple options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions

Climate change

There are multiple, “feasible and effective” options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to human-caused climate change and they are available now, scientists claim in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report.

The IPCC says the report, approved during a week-long session in Interlaken, highlights the losses and damages caused by climate change that are happening now and will continue in the future. The organisation continues that taking the right action now could result in the transformational change essential for a sustainable, equitable world.

The IPCC says keeping warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels requires “deep, rapid and sustained” greenhouse gas emissions reductions in all sectors. Emissions should be decreasing by now and will need to be cut by almost half by 2030 if warming is to be limited to 1.5°C, the organisation contends.

The solution, the IPCC says, lies in climate-resilient development, which involves integrating measures to adapt to climate change with actions to reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions in ways that provide wider benefits.

Commenting on the report, IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee, said: “Mainstreaming effective and equitable climate action will not only reduce losses and damages for nature and people, but it will also provide wider benefits.

“This Synthesis Report underscores the urgency of taking more ambitious action and shows that, if we act now, we can still secure a liveable sustainable future for all.”

The greatest gains in wellbeing could come from prioritising climate risk reduction for low-income and marginalised communities.

The IPCC says that climate-resilient development becomes progressively more challenging with every increment of warming, which is why the choices made in the next few years will play a “critical role” in deciding our future and that of generations to come.

Christopher Trisos, one of the report’s authors, commented: “The greatest gains in wellbeing could come from prioritising climate risk reduction for low-income and marginalised communities, including people living in informal settlements.

“Accelerated climate action will only come about if there is a many-fold increase in finance. Insufficient and misaligned finance is holding back progress.”

There is sufficient global capital to rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions if existing barriers are reduced, the IPCC says and continues that increasing finance to climate investments is important to achieve global climate goals. Governments, through public funding and clear signals to investors, are key in reducing these barriers, and investors, central banks and financial regulators can also play their part, the organisation says.

Send this to a friend