Every day, the globe sends more indications of a climate crisis, from melting the bars to weakening ocean currents that transport warm water from the tropics into the North Atlantic. The first installment of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Sixth Assessment Report was released on August 9, highlighting, among other things, that GHG emissions are not decreasing but instead expanding.
Unless we gain significant CO2 and other GHG emissions reductions, the world faces global warming of more than 1.5°C (and maybe two °C) this century. Burning extremes, ocean heatwaves, severe precipitation, agricultural and ecological droughts in some parts, and the proportion of powerful tropical cyclones, as well as losses in Arctic sea ice, snow cover, and permafrost, are all on the rise.
With these threats in mind, it is critical to enhance public policies at all levels – from local to worldwide – to attain net-zero emissions and adapt to climate change’s effects.
To combat climate change, countries want more robust instruments.
The OECD released the International Programme for Action on Climate Change in May 2021. (IPAC). By 2050, this project intends to assist countries in achieving net-zero GHG emissions and more resilient economies. IPAC will assist countries in strengthening and coordinating climate action and completing and defending the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement via regular monitoring, procedure review, and feedback on results and best practices.
More governments must adopt net-zero targets, subnational entities, organizations, and corporations by 2050 or sooner.
At the federal status, there has existed some encouraging progress toward Net-Zero. Twelve IPAC members now have net-zero aims incorporated in federal law, three have filed decree in the congress, and 18 have retained net-zero marks in official policy documents. European Union member states used a regional net-zero drive. IPAC will help national efforts attain net-zero emissions and assist countries in aligning their economic and social development priorities with the need to safeguard the environment.
To achieve net-zero, country action is insufficient. Subnational governments, towns, and businesses all have a crucial role in revving the climate movement. In this respect, the United Nations’ Global Climate Action platform, created in 2014, has logged about 25,000 activities by cities, businesses, and organizations seeking to address and mitigate climate change.
Long-term climate plans must be established and codified into legislation.
All parties “should strive to formulate and communicate long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies, bringing into account their shared but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities, in light of different national circumstances,” according to Report 4 of the Paris Agreement. It will be difficult to muster the political will to make changes in crucial sectors in the medium term without these signals of resolution and clarity. Despite this, just 32 parties have submitted long-term plans (LTS) to the UNFCCC secretariat, with 25 of these LTS being submitted by IPAC participants and the European Union.
The funding and implementation of climate technology have been stuck in a rut.
Even though most of the worldwide CO2 emissions reductions through 2030 will come from currently available technology, according to the International Energy Agency, improvement is gradual, and many sectors are opposing the transition. The development of realistic, economically viable ways to promote these technologies, as well as the regulations required to mass-deploy them, and the allocation of monies for green projects, has not progressed quickly enough. Reduced CO2 and other GHG emissions and short-lived climate pollutants require increased energy efficiency and decreased fossil fuel consumption.
Amid a crisis, this is a once-in-a-lifetime
The COP26 conference, which choice takes place in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12, 2021, will provide a unique chance to finalize the Paris Agreement Rulebook, expand finance flows, and accelerate progress toward carbon neutrality and climate resilience. The OECD will actively support this collaborative effort. The OECD will make a variety of contributions.
Video courtesy: Undecided with Matt Ferrell