QUEZON CITY, May 6, 2021 — Projected global mean temperature decreases to 2.4 degrees by 2100 given new climate targets set in Paris Agreement commitments, according to a new analysis released by independent scientific analysis Climate Action Tracker (CAT).
Improving by 0.2 degrees from the initial estimate, major contributions to the new CAT rating came from climate action commitments announced during United States President Joe Biden’s Leaders’ Summit – specifically from the US, European Union, China, and Japan, although Japan and China are yet to submit new pledges to the United Nations.
The analysis also shows the “optimistic scenario” warming at 2.0 degrees, which can be achieved assuming all net zero targets set in climate pledges are fully implemented. On the other hand, estimated global temperature from current policies is 2.9 degrees, a long way from the initial 1.5 degree Paris Agreement goal.
In response, Rex Barrer, climate governance head of the Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities, said:
“Having the mean global temperature at 2.4 degrees by 2100 is far from the ideal scenario. We are already losing so much in the current path we are on, and this is just the beginning especially for vulnerable nations. Rich countries need to step up and pay for the consequences caused by years of releasing vast amounts of emissions.
“Climate action announcements made during President Biden’s climate summit sends the right signals, but signals are not enough for a country like the US. Saying ‘America is all in’ is not enough if the speech ends up paving the way for a tsunami of fossil gas exports to countries vulnerable to climate change.
“The new CAT global rating shows that we are on the right track, but we need to do far more. We need to see far greater emission reductions than what has been pledged. And if we consider finance as the main yardstick with which to measure US intentions, we can say the Biden announcement was deplorably low. Far greater contributions of climate finance from the US is needed so that those least responsible for the climate crisis can protect themselves from impacts that can no longer be avoided even as they are provided the means of implementation to move rapidly towards modern, climate-sensitive, inclusive economies.”
The Institute for Climate and Sustainable Cities is a Manila-based international policy group advancing climate resilience and low carbon development.
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Photo by Adam Schultz/Public Domain, lifted from the U.S. Department of State Flickr account | President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., with Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry, kicks off the virtual Leaders Summit on Climate in Washington, D.C., on April 22, 2021.