PARIS: The latest annual Emissions Gap report from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) indicates that current climate pledges made by countries are steering the Earth toward warming beyond crucial global limits. The report, released ahead of the COP28 climate talks, underscores the urgent need for enhanced efforts to address climate change.
In the face of what is projected to be the hottest year in human history, the UNEP report highlights a “disturbing acceleration in the number, speed, and scale of broken climate records” around the world. Despite the severity of the climate crisis, the report emphasizes that record levels of greenhouse gases, primarily from fossil fuels, continue to be released into the atmosphere.
UNEP Warns Earth on Trajectory for Disastrous Warming
The UNEP warns that, considering the decarbonization plans submitted by countries, the Earth is on a trajectory for disastrous warming, ranging between 2.5 degrees Celsius and 2.9 degrees Celsius by the year 2100. Without additional measures, existing policies and emissions-cutting efforts alone could result in a 3-degree Celsius increase in global temperatures.
The 2015 Paris Agreement set a global commitment to limit global warming to “well below” 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels, with an aspirational target of 1.5 degrees Celsius. The report underscores the current shortfall in meeting these goals, with nearly 1.2 degrees Celsius of global heating already causing a surge in deadly climate impacts worldwide.