But when all the nations’ pledges were added together, the United Nations calculations showed that Earth’s surface temperatures were still on track to increase at least three degrees Celsius and possibly four degrees Celsius. In short, NDCs have not done enough.
So the framers of the Paris Agreement have asked participating countries to review their NDCs every five years from now on, prompting them to “elevate” their climate goals to more ambitious levels.
Find out here how the largest emitters of greenhouse gases are doing and what they are doing to meet their pledges to reduce global warming.
The first batch of new NDCs was due in 2020, shortly before the meeting originally scheduled in Glasgow. But that commitment and the meeting itself have been pushed back to 2021 due to the pandemic, and most countries have since submitted their revised commitments.
As Glasgow will mark the “first significant update” of NDCs since Paris, this climate summit is, according to David Victor, a climate policy expert at the University of California, San Diego, “very significant. All the countries of the world have raised the bar for their pledges. It is The clearest expression of the level of climate action and ambition since Paris.”
How ambitious are the new NDCs?
Many of the reviews are very ambitious, says Gilanpour, because they set out the kind of grandiose goals the framers of the Paris Agreement had in mind. For example, the United States increased its 2030 target to reduce its emissions to 50 to 52 percent from 2005 levels; Britain now aims to cut its emissions by 68 percent by 2030 compared to 1990, compared to 57 percent at the time of Paris.
But the new NDCs don’t go far either. Some of the countries with the highest emitters, including India and China, have yet to submit their revisions, while others, including Russia, Australia and Brazil, have not actually raised their targets. A recent UN analysis of All New Intent showed that if all new NDCs were met, the Earth would still be about 2.7°C warm. Global emissions are still on track to be 16 percent higher in 2030 than they were in 2010, rather than dropping by about 45 percent by then, something scientists recommend to reduce global warming. Keeping Earth below 1.5 degrees Celsius .
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In a sense, this is a valuable improvement over the original NDCs, which will result in a 23 percent increase in emissions by 2030 over 2010 and a warming of more than three degrees Celsius.
“Indeed, we’ve made amazing progress,” Victor says. “While it won’t stop warming – it’s not less than 2 degrees of warming – it’s a much better development than the original track. It’s very important to measure this progress compared to previous plans.”
Analysts now hope that COP26 will lead to the adoption of more ambitious climate goals, push participating countries to meet their new goals and begin work on the next round of Nationally Determined Contributions in 2025, which should be strong enough to meet the goals. The temperature rise is close to 1.5 degrees Celsius. Some countries have already developed plans to be climate neutral by 2050 and negotiators, activists and world leaders at COP26 hope that more countries will commit to becoming climate neutral in the coming decades at the Climate Summit.
According to Cletus, the most ambitious goals alone are not enough, because there is still a huge gap between all those promises and policies that will be fulfilled. In a recently published report, the United Nations Environment Programme, the United Nations Environment Program, noted that only ten of the world’s highest emitting countries are on track to meet their original Nationally Determined Contributions.
“Countries like the United States may have made strong national contributions, we need policies to meet these commitments,” says Cleats.
“It was Paris what or what, Glasgow is it How do‘, says Kyte. She said negotiators will try to identify practical and far-reaching measures to achieve these goals.
NDCs describe only some of these actions, so heads of state and government in Glasgow will also be looking at other ways to reduce emissions.
According to COP26 President Alok Sharma, the main objective of the climate summit is to impose more concrete commitments to reduce the consumption of coal, the world’s most polluting fuel. Several countries, including China’s largest consumer of coal, have pledged to stop financing new coal-fired power plants abroad, although they will continue to build such power plants domestically.
“You will hear a funeral march for coal-fired power finance in Glasgow,” Kyte predicts. We also hope that the money will be diverted significantly towards green energy sources.
In addition, many world leaders in Glasgow hope to persuade the rest of the world to come up with plans to reduce methane emissions as quickly as possible. As a greenhouse gas, methane is 84 times more powerful than carbon dioxide in the short term2 Thus, it will contribute significantly to global warming in the coming decades. Reducing emissions of this gas by 30% – the proposed goal – should save the planet at least 0.2°C of warming by 2050.
Sharma will also hold talks about phasing out production of new fossil fuel vehicles by 2035 and about stronger legal measures to curb deforestation.
equality and justice
Another issue would be justice. Developed countries such as the United States are responsible for most of the current climate changes, and in 2015 it was agreed in Paris that these countries would help less developed countries prepare for threats such as global warming and maintain their economic growth. From fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.
It would be difficult, if not impossible, to develop more sustainable energy sources in developing countries without substantially supporting these countries in the short term, says Yamed Dagnet, a climate policy expert and former negotiator now at the World Resources Institute. “You’re going to have to start a lot of investments,” she says.
Developed countries have established the Climate Fund to finance the above-mentioned transformation and sustainable economic growth in poor countries. The fund should have $100 billion to spend each year, but so far it has been replenished by no more than $80 billion annually. Nor are there plans for a similar fiscal program beyond 2025. Many developing country leaders believe that these amounts are not close enough. According to Dagnet, it is very important that COP26 participants discuss the shortcomings of the fund.
“It’s a matter of trust: You’re asking developing countries to do more on climate issues when developed countries don’t keep all the agreements,” she says. “At least, they should deliver the promised money.”
Another stark fact is that many countries will fail to adapt to all the effects of climate change. Some countries will suffer irreparable damage or are already suffering from such damage. For example, some island nations are at risk of disappearing completely as a result of sea level rise. This kind of existential “loss and damage” is not the fault of those countries themselves, and so they need financial help – and international cooperation – to absorb the damage and adapt.
“What happens if you lose your land and your cultural heritage?” The wonders of Dagnet. It’s a matter of justice, climate justice, and progress must be made on that.
This article was originally published in English at nationalgeographic.com
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