The annual UN report, the Emissions Gap Report 2019 was released this week. This year’s report highlights the fact that countries are not doing enough to curb emissions and prevent global temperatures from increasing.
In fact, we are approaching the point of no return. According to the report, if countries continue to delay climate change proposals or simply do nothing, it will no longer be possible to stay within the goals of the Paris Agreement.
The goal of the agreement was to lower greenhouse gas emissions and prevent the temperature from increasing by 1.5 C by the end of the century.
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Are Increasing
With all of the positive news this year on cutting emissions around the world, you would expect some progress to be made.
However, that isn’t the case. In fact, the UN report states the exact opposite. Greenhouse gas emissions have reached a new high and that has changed the entire timeline.
Previously, nations were working off the assumption they had until 2050 to become climate neutral. However, due to the increase, that timeline has shifted.
All of the latest models indicate that significant changes need to happen in the next decade. The report indicates that at least a 7.6% decrease in global emissions is required to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement.
G20 Nations Are To Blame
G20 is a group of 19 countries and the European Union which have the most active economies in the world. They are also responsible for 81% of global emissions.
Only 5 of the 20 nations have plans in place to curb emissions. And out of those 5, only two actually have enforceable legislation in place.
To make matters worse, the United States is planning to withdraw from the Paris Agreement. If this occurs, the United States will become the only country in the world that will not be in the agreement.
The United States is responsible for 16% of global emissions, which makes it the second-biggest emitter behind China. It’s withdrawal and refusal to pass climate change legislation could be the deciding factor for staying on track.