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World to get warmer by nearly 3°C by end of century: UN report

  • Category
    Ecology and Environment
  • Published
    27th Nov, 2023

Context:

The Emissions Gap Report noted that in 2023, 86 days have breached the 1.5 degree Celsius temperature threshold.

What UN Report says?

  • Breach of 1.5 degree Celsius: As many as 86 days this year so far have already breached the 1.5 degree Celsius temperature threshold, as global greenhouse gas emissions scaled a record high in 2022.
  • 3 degree Celsius: With current climate policies of countries, the world was set to become warmer by at least 3 degree Celsius by the end of the century.
  • World CO2 emission: The world, together, emitted 57.4 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2022, a 1.2 per cent increase over the previous year and higher than the previous record achieved in 2019, according to the Emissions Gap Report by UNEP.

World CO2 emission analysis:

  • The emissions of China and the United States, the world’s two biggest emitters, also rose in 2022, as did that of India, the third largest emitter.
  • But the European Union, Russia and Brazil saw emissions go down a bit.
  • If all the climate actions as per the current promises were carried out, global emissions in 2030 would still be at least 19 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent higher than the level required to keep global warming within 1.5 degree Celsius from pre-industrial times.

How this emission gap can be tackled:

  • CO2 emission decline: To meet this gap, global emissions would need to drop by at least 8.7 per cent every year from 2024 (instead of the 1.2 per cent rise that happened in 2022).
  • Proactive world actions: The failure of the world to take early action on climate had brought it into a situation where meeting the 1.5 degree Celsius target looks extremely difficult.
  • Annual emission reductions: The annual emission reductions necessary to achieve emission levels consistent with the below 2°C and 1.5°C scenarios by 2030 would have been only 0.7 per cent and 3.3 per cent on average.
  • Below 2°C pathway: To reach emission levels consistent with a below 2°C pathway in 2030, the cuts required per year are now 5.3 per cent from 2024, reaching 8.7 per cent per year on average for the 1.5°C pathway.

Way Forward:

  • The impacts of inaction are already evident with the year 2023 all set to emerge as the hottest ever, overtaking the previous record of 2016.
  • According to an assessment by the World Meteorological Organisation, one of the next four years is almost certain to breach the 1.5 degree Celsius threshold for the annual average as well.
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