The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) warns today that the world's annual greenhouse gas emissions are still much too high to meet the agreed international goal of holding global warming below 2°C.
Connie Hedegaard, European Commission for Climate Action, said: ''This is yet another call for climate action which shows the world is not getting its act together fast enough. It is simply incredible what big risks too many people are prepared to take on behalf of future generations. Despite the facts and evidence in front of us, there are still many interests advocating doing nothing or continuing with business as usual, as if that costs nothing. Or just forgetting the climate crisis until we have solved the economic crisis. This is unacceptable. Yes, the gap is widening; but the good news is that it's not too late to close it!"
In its annual Emissions Gap Report, released today, UNEP says that countries' existing emission pledges, if fully implemented, will help reduce emissions to below the business-as-usual level in 2020, but not to a level consistent with the 2°C limit, thus leaving a considerable and growing “emissions gap”.
To help bridge the gap, the European Union will be pressing at next week's Doha climate conference for progress towards concrete measures to raise the ambition of near-term global climate action in order to cut world emissions further before 2020.