environment

World going in 'wrong direction' as climate impacts worsen: U.N.

11 Comments
By Patrick GALEY

Humanity is "going in the wrong direction" on climate change due to its addiction to fossil fuels, the U.N. said in an assessment showing that planet-warming emissions are higher than before the pandemic.

The U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization and its Environment Program this week warned catastrophes will become commonplace should the world economy fail to decarbonize in line with what science says is needed to prevent the worst impacts of global heating.

They pointed to Pakistan's monumental floods and China's crop-withering heatwave this year as examples of what to expect.

"Floods, droughts, heatwaves, extreme storms and wildfires are going from bad to worse, breaking records with alarming frequency," said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

The U.N. warned last month that the drought gripping the Horn of Africa and threatening millions with acute food shortages was now likely to extend into a fifth year.

"There is nothing natural about the new scale of these disasters. They are the price of humanity's fossil fuel addiction," said Guterres.

The U.N.'s United in Science report underscores how, nearly three years since COVID-19 handed governments a unique opportunity to reassess how to power their economies, countries are ploughing ahead with pollution as normal.

It found that after an unprecedented 5.4 percent fall in emissions in 2020 due to lockdowns and travel restrictions, preliminary data from January-May this year shows global CO2 emissions are 1.2 percent higher than before COVID-19.

This is largely down to large year-on-year increases in the United States, India, and most European countries, the assessment found.

"The science is unequivocal: we are going in the wrong direction," said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas. "Greenhouse gas concentrations are continuing to rise, reaching new record highs. Fossil fuel emission rates are now above pre-pandemic levels. The past seven years were the warmest on record."

Last week the European Union's Copernicus climate monitor said that summer 2022 was the hottest in Europe and one of the hottest globally since records began in the 1970s.

Tuesday's report said there was a 93 percent chance that the record for the hottest year globally -- currently, 2016 -- will be broken within five years.

It warned the continued use of fossil fuels meant the chance of the annual mean global temperature temporarily exceeding 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels in one of the next five years was roughly even (48 percent).

Keeping longer term temperatures below 1.5C is the most ambitious goal of the 2015 Paris Agreement.

Despite more than three decades of U.N.-lead negotiations, rich polluters show little sign of being willing to make the kind of emissions cuts that would keep the 1.5C goal in play.

The U.N.'s Environment Program, in an update to its annual "emissions gap" assessment following new pledges made at last November's COP26 summit in Glasgow, said Tuesday that even these promises were far from adequate.

In fact, it said the ambition even in countries' most recent pledges would need to be four times greater to limit warming to 2C, and seven times higher to make 1.5C.

All told, current worldwide climate policies put Earth on course to warm 2.8C by 2100, UNEP said.

Guterres said that Tuesday's assessment showed "climate impacts heading into uncharted territory of destruction".

"Yet each year we double-down on this fossil fuel addiction, even as the symptoms get rapidly worse," he said in a video message.

Tasneem Essop, executive director of Climate Action Network, said that the forthcoming COP27 climate conference in Egypt needed leaders to agree to new funding to help communities in at-risk nations rebuild after extreme events.

"The terrifying picture painted by the United in Science report is already a lived reality for millions of people facing recurring climate disasters," she said.

© 2022 AFP

©2022 GPlusMedia Inc.

11 Comments
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Well no surprise as to who the biggest institutional culprit is-

[ The US military is the largest institutional consumer of oil in the world. Every year, our armed forces consume more than 100 million barrels of oil to power ships, vehicles, aircraft, and ground operations—enough for over 4 million trips around the Earth, assuming 25 mpg. ]

https://www.ucsusa.org/resources/us-military-and-oil#:~:text=The%20US%20military%20is%20the,the%20Earth%2C%20assuming%2025%20mpg.

'Keeping the peace' (like provoking China) will have little solace for future generations when the planet becomes uninhabitable.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

World going in 'wrong direction' as climate impacts worsen - UN:

How many more years would UN keep mumbling on climate change but unable to enforce its members to act?

People are sick of UN's inapt innateness. Anyway, it is just a convenient mouthpiece of some since its inception..

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

pledges would need to be four times greater to limit warming to 2C, and seven times higher to make 1.5C

So with the concerns that some countries in Europe have about freezing this winter and some states in the US with borderline brownouts, the ability to reduce fossil fuels 2-7 times what is Pledged is impossible. There is no way to replace that infrastructure at that speed without just shutting down electric grids.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

World is definitely going I the wrong direction...and not just regarding the climate.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Sounds like the UNs looking for more $$.

Crying how the "Sky is falling" generally generates the members of the UN a pay rise .

Thusly contributing to "Climate Change."

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Poor animal...

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"Yet each year we double-down on this fossil fuel addiction, even as the symptoms get rapidly worse," he said in a video message.

Oh, the gaslighting never ends...

Using natural resources is now an "addiction".

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Crying how the "Sky is falling" generally generates the members of the UN a pay rise .

Thusly contributing to "Climate Change."

How exactly does this works in your mind? the UN repeats what the scientists in the field show as correct based on verifiable data. This means making efforts to reduce what is well known to be the cause, how do this makes things worse?

Using natural resources is now an "addiction".

What do you mean with "now"?

the negative effects of fossil fuel use are well known, but people still insist on using it without making the necessary investment in renewable sources that would ameliorate those negative effects, it is valid to call this persistance an "addiction".

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

"Floods, droughts, heatwaves, extreme storms and wildfires are going from bad to worse, breaking records with alarming frequency," said UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

Are the snowflakes bigger and whiter too?

How exactly does this works in your mind? the UN repeats what the scientists in the field show as correct based on verifiable data. This means making efforts to reduce what is well known to be the cause, how do this makes things worse?

Just saying it is "verifiable data" is only your own personal bias.

the negative effects of fossil fuel use are well known, but people still insist on using it without making the necessary investment in renewable sources that would ameliorate those negative effects, it is valid to call this persistance an "addiction".

There is no evidence or proof that renewable sources would ameliorate any negative effects. Again, relying on non--scientific information to make this "claim".

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Humanity is "going in the wrong direction" on climate change

How can that be?

Over the past few decades, we've implemented zillions of laws and policies aimed at protecting the environment.

We've designed and invented zillions of environmental-friendly products -- and we're continuing to do so, literally every year.

We've spent God only knows how much money on combatting the problem of so-called "manmade climate change."

Now they're basically telling us that it's all been a waste of time, effort, and money?

If we're going in the wrong direction on climate change (which has been going on for millions of years, by the way), then what do these Marxists think the right direction would be?

Never mind -- I don't want to know.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Just saying it is "verifiable data" is only your own personal bias.

I am not the one saying it but every scientific institution realted to climate research, what arguments do you have to say they are all wrong and lying?

There is no evidence or proof that renewable sources would ameliorate any negative effects.

According to the experts in the field there is,

https://fas.org/blogs/sciencepolicy/countering-climate-change-with-renewable-energy-technologies/

https://www.un.org/en/climatechange/raising-ambition/renewable-energy

https://energy.yourcoop.coop/how-does-renewable-energy-reduce-climate-change/

https://www.irena.org/climatechange/Renewable-Energy-Key-climate-solution

https://www.nrdc.org/experts/noah-long/renewable-energy-key-fighting-climate-change

So can you prove the Federation of American Scientists, the United Nations, etc are wrong? based on what?

The references have many perfectly valid references that prove what they say,

You on the other hand only base your mistaken opinion on not knowing the evidence that exist, that is not valid, you not knowing something do not mean it does not exist.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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