United Nations, Aug. 10: Efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions and the impacts of global warming will fall significantly short without drastic changes in global land use, agriculture and human diets, leading researchers warn in a high-level report commissioned by the United Nations.
Less than two months ahead of a key September 23 UN Climate Summit in New York, a report published by UN Climate Change provides insights into action taken by governments to address climate change, presenting a wealth of knowledge and experience that can be deployed by governments to ramp up crucial climate ambition.
The report “Climate Action and Support Trends” was prepared as UN Climate Change input to the UN Climate Summit and it puts a spotlight on the progress made over the past 25 years since the inception of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). This can help in scaling up further action, as governments prepare to submit the next round of national climate action plans, known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), by 2020.
UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa said, “The next two years offer a crucial window of opportunity for all nations – as well as non-State actors – to capitalize on our current framework, build on our existing momentum and make the changes we desperately need.
“The good news is that much of this work has already begun. There is a solid basis on which to build ambition, and there is a clear sense of urgency to address the existential threat of climate change. But the pace of action remains too slow and must be accelerated.”
The report warns that after a short period of stabilization, global greenhouse gas emissions have continued to rise. Despite clear progress in some areas, efforts by countries to achieve their national climate action plans are currently not sufficient to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement.
The growing sense of urgency to act is shared by many countries that have been reporting an increase of climate-related impacts and hazards.
The new UN report outlines these impacts and the measures countries are deploying to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to build resilience to climate change.
It also details the levels of support provided and received by developing countries to do so, including finance, technology, and capacity-building, crucial for countries to achieve their climate objectives.