Resetting the climate clock shows the world is one year closer to the 1.5C warming threshold – Technology News, Firstpost


Global carbon dioxide emissions are projected to rise to near 2019 levels this year, reversing last year’s unprecedented decline caused by COVID-19 blockades. This means that emissions are rising again, when they should be rapidly declining if we are to achieve the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 ° C above pre-industrial levels.

We created the Climate clock in 2015 to show how fast we are approaching 1.5C, the lower limit of the Paris Agreement global temperature target ea consequential threshold for climatic impacts.

The watch tracks global emissions and temperature data and uses the most recent five-year emissions pattern to estimate how long it takes before global warming reaches the 1.5 ° C mark. The new 2021 emissions estimate takes nearly a year off the countdown, which means we are now only just over 10 years from 1.5C.

Real-time global warming monitoring

The Climate Clock is a way to visualize and measure progress towards our global climate goals. The date approaches in time when emissions rise or moves further back when they decrease. Each year, we’ve updated the clock to reflect the latest global data, as well as our best scientific understanding of what level of emissions is needed to limit warming to 1.5C.

This year’s watch reset uses three updated datasets. First, new estimates of global temperature rise from the sixth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) show that human greenhouse gas emissions are responsible for nearly all of the observed warming of the climate system. We use the estimate of human-induced global warming from the global warming index, which in November 2021 reached 1.24 C above the average temperature 1850-1900.

Second, the Global Carbon Project predicts that global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions in 2021 will increase by 4.9% from 2020, after a decline of 5.4% between 2019 and 2020. past five years to project the global trend in carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels, assuming that additional carbon dioxide emissions from land use will remain constant at the average level of the past five years.

Data from 2016 to 2021 suggests that, in the absence of further policy action, global carbon dioxide emissions will continue to increase on average by 0.2 billion tonnes (about half a percentage point) per year.

Third, we use the latest estimate of remaining carbon balance. This represents the total amount of carbon dioxide emissions that we can still emit, without exceeding a particular global temperature target.

According to the IPCC’s latest estimate, the remaining carbon budget is 500 billion tons of carbon dioxide emissions from 2020 onwards. We will have emitted nearly 80 billion tonnes over the period 2020-21, leaving 420 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions in the balance sheet after 2021. The year we issue the last of this remaining carbon balance is also expected to be the year when global temperatures reach 1.5 C.

The current emissions trend suggests that this moment is now only 10 years away.

Reducing global emissions can add time to the clock

When we updated the climate clock in 2020, the decrease in global emissions caused by COVID-related blockages was enough to add nearly a year to the clock. But now, in 2021, emissions are rising again and the time that was added earlier has been lost. This year’s annual update removed nine months from the countdown, which now marks 10 years and five months to reach 1.5C.

However, many things can happen in a decade. Each avoided emission of carbon dioxide is a unit of time that we can add to the watch. Decreases in other warming-causing greenhouse gases, such as methane or nitrous oxide, will also help extend the time line by 1.5 ° C, as the effects of these other gases are reflected in the remaining carbon balance estimate. .

If we can bring global carbon dioxide emissions to zero within the next two decades, we have a good chance of not reaching 1.5 ° C at all. Few countries, however, have adopted this level of ambition: Only a handful, including Uruguay, Finland, Iceland and Austria, have proposed zero net emissions commitments with a target year of 2040 or earlier.

Net-zero by 2040 is clearly a tall order, but it’s not too late to try. If we have learned one thing from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is that swift and far-reaching action in response to an acute threat can be successful in limiting the damage. Global climate change is a less acute but equally powerful global threat. If we can respond in kind, we will equally be able to limit the damage to current and future generations.

The Climate Clock was co-created with the musician and the author David Usher. H. Damon Matthews, Professor and Research Chair of Concordia University in Climate Sciences and Sustainability, Concordia University Other Glen Peters, Research Director, Center for International Climate and Environment Research – Oslo

This article is republished by The conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.


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