Door: Carbon footprint management, 17 April 2015

How do we keep global warming below two degrees?

The latest report of the UN climate panel IPCC gave us some firm conclusions. In the year 2100 the world must function without the use of fossil fuels. And perhaps the most important remark: There is a lot of urgency needed to keep global warming below 2 degrees Celsius.

To keep global warming below 2 degrees it is necessary that all countries cut their greenhouse gas emissions in 2050 with 40 to 70%. And at the end of the century completely to zero. This brings great economic, technological and managerial challenges. But the longer we wait, the greater the challenges and costs.

Cost-efficient reduction of CO2 emissions

A cost-efficient reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, such as CO2, suggests a combination of measures. Think about energy conservation, stimulation of alternative energy sources and the prevention of deforestation. This often leads to additional benefits, such as improved security of energysupply, improved air quality and a sustainable economy.

Unfortunately an adaptation to climate change is already inevitable. An example of adaptation is the greening of cities, which can lead to lower energy and water use, which cuts costs and has positive effects on health.

Climate change persists

The average temperature of the Earth increased by 0.9 degrees Celsius since the period 1850-1900. If we continue emitting greenhouse gases on the current scale, global temperature is expected to rise by several degrees during this century. This increases the risk of irreversible and abrupt changes in societies and natural systems.

The sea level has risen 19 cm compared to 1900 and will continue to rise during this century even if greenhouse gas emissions are completely stopped now. If emissions continue, the increase of temperature is significantly higher. Further warming will lead to more extreme weather events such as heat waves and heavy rain, depletion of natural resources and food, undermining energy security and more conflicts and migration.

International agreements are needed now

UN countries have agreed to try to limit the global temperature rise with two degrees celsius compared to 1850. In EU context recently new climate and energy targets were agreed for the year 2030. The world agreed to reach a new climate agreement in 2015 in Paris. The latest UN Report emphasizes the urgency of new international agreements and a strengthening of policies at national level.

If your organization already wants to start with preventing further climate change, than please use our free 5-step roadmap and start saving energy today.