Emissions Gap Report 2022

The Closing Window - Climate Crisis Calls for Rapid Transformation of Societies

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Every year, the negative impacts of climate change become more intense. Every year, they bring more misery and pain to hundreds of millions of people across the globe. Every year, they become more a problem of the here and now, as well as a warning of tougher consequences to come. We are in a climate emergency. And still, as UNEP’s Emissions Gap Report 2022 shows, nations procrastinate. Since COP26 in Glasgow in 2021, new and updated nationally determined contributions (NDCs) have barely impacted the temperatures we can expect to see at the end of this century. This year’s report tells us that unconditional NDCs point to a 2.6°C increase in temperatures by 2100, far beyond the goals of the Paris Agreement. Existing policies point to a 2.8°C increase, highlighting a gap between national commitments and the efforts to enact those commitments. In the best case scenario, full implementation of conditional NDCs, plus additional net zero commitments, point to a 1.8°C rise. However, this scenario is currently not credible. To get on track to limiting global warming to 1.5°C, we would need to cut 45 per cent off current greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. For 2°C, we would need to cut 30 per cent. A stepwise approach is no longer an option. We need system-wide transformation. This report tells us how to go about such a transformation. It looks in-depth at the changes needed in electricity supply, industry, transport, buildings and food systems. It looks at how to reform financial systems so that these urgent transformations can be adequately financed.


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