According to the newest anxiety-inducing study from the United Nations’ climate monitoring organization, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), it’s not over yet, but things are looking very, very bad.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the UN are specifically urging richer countries to aim for net zero emissions by 2040 and developing countries to aim for it by 2050 — roughly ten years earlier on both counts than previous target estimates — while also acknowledging that those targets are unlikely to be met at current levels of mitigation and adaptation policy.
IPCC has even put a number on it: if the planet warms by more than 1.5 degrees Celsius/2.5 degrees Fahrenheit during the next decade, all hell will break out.
If our leaders are unable, unwilling, or unable to achieve these goals, the implications will be grave, as the research warns: water shortages will become prevalent as heatwaves and droughts grow more often and longer; global hunger will occur; and infectious disease rates will increase.
In addition to the zero-emission objectives, the UN has set an even more improbable target: wealthier nations must stop using coal by 2030, and poorer countries must do so by 2040.
We are at a “critical juncture in history,” and the decisions we make now and in the next years will resonate throughout the planet for hundreds, if not thousands, of years — and we can’t deny, that’s a terrifying notion.
The article is based on IPCC report; edited by Clean-Future Team
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