Contributed by Robert Lyman ©2019 Read his bio here.
New report – download here: PROMISES VS PERFORMANCE Final
At the COP21 Conference in December 2015, most member countries of the United Nations agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) in accordance with Independent Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) to be updated every five years. Almost four years later, how are the largest emitters performing?
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimated that avoiding a two degree Celsius ( C ) rise in average global temperatures over pre-industrial levels would require GHG emissions to decline by 2030 to 40 gigatonnes (Gt) of carbon dioxide equivalent, and to avoid a 1.5-degree C. rise would require a 24.3 GT reduction. This is roughly equivalent to reductions in carbon dioxide emissions to 24.3 Gt for the two-degree C. goal and 15 Gt for the 1.5-degree C. goal.
The ten largest emitters in the world, in order, are: China, the United States, the European Union, India, Russia, Japan, South Korea, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Canada.
Th following table indicates the projected emissions of these countries by 2030, based on the analysis of Climate Action Tracker and my own assessment.
Projected Emissions of Largest Emitters by 2030 (Mt)
|China||14400 – 16600|
|Russian Federation||1590 – 1740|
|Saudi Arabia||810 – 1040|
|Iran||700 – 750|
|Total||27468 – 30098|
In summary, none of the largest emitters, except the EU, will meet the emissions targets they set for themselves in 2015. This makes it highly likely that global emissions in 2030 will be well above, not below, those today. There is no “global decarbonization transition” occurring.
In other words, based on current trends, the IPCC’s goals will not be met. Indeed, it is highly likely that emissions from China, India and the United States combined will exceed 24 GT by 2030. That means that all the other countries of the world could completely eliminate their emissions, and indeed cease to exist, within twelve years and the two-degree C. goal would not be met.