Pledges to fight global warming inadequate

2012-11-30 22:05
Political leaders more obsessed with short-term gains are hampering the move toward policies that will protect the environment, the WWF has said. (Boris Grdanoski, AP)

Political leaders more obsessed with short-term gains are hampering the move toward policies that will protect the environment, the WWF has said. (Boris Grdanoski, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Doha – Major nations' policies are inadequate to limit global warming and the United States is off track even in carrying out its weak pledge to limit greenhouse gas emissions, a scientific scorecard showed. 

The Climate Action Tracker report, issued on the sidelines of talks among almost 200 countries in Doha about climate change, said a toughening of policies was still possible to avert damaging floods, heat waves and rising seas.

Major emitters China, the United States, the European Union and Russia all got "inadequate" ratings for their plans to help limit global warming to an agreed UN ceiling of below 2°C above pre-industrial times, it said.

Adding up all national pledges and taking account of rising emissions, the world was headed for a warming of about 3.3°C, it said.

"We are off track and the United States is not likely to meet its pledge," Niklas Hoehne of research group Ecofys, which compiles the tracker with Climate Analytics and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, said.

He told Reuters that the other top emitters were on course at least to meet their promised curbs in emissions by 2020 as part of efforts to avert severe change that would disrupt water and food supplies.

Obama pursues emissions cut

President Barack Obama aims to cut US emissions by 17% below 2005 levels by 2020. The US delegation leader in Doha, Johnathan Pershing, has reaffirmed the target and said Washington has been making "enormous" efforts.

But the US Senate never ratified Obama's pledge, made in 2009. Hoehne said that the United States could step up action by tightening emissions from existing coal plants, giving more incentives for renewable energy or tougher building codes.

Pershing said US emissions seem to have peaked, spurred by Obama's clean energy policies. The US goal is being helped by a shift to less-polluting shale gas from coal, and by an economic slowdown.

Among the biggest emitters, only Japan and South Korea had formal policies for cuts that were "sufficient". India, Brazil and Indonesia got a "medium rating," according to the scorecard.

"Two degrees is feasible. It's possible, but we have to start now, not wait until 2020 to act," Bill Hare of Climate Analytics said.

"The longer you wait, the harder it gets," Michiel Schaeffer, also of Climate Analytics, said.

The study projected that China's policies of restraining the growth of its emissions meant they would climb to about 14 billion tonnes by 2020 from 10 billion now. Without the measures, emissions would surge to 18.5 billion.

The averted amount, of 4.5 billion tonnes, is more than the EU's entire annual emissions and the biggest single step towards slowing climate change, the study said.

Last week, a UN Environment Programme study using slightly different methods came to a similar conclusion that the world was overshooting the 2°C target, putting the number at between 3°C and 5°C.

Read more on:    qatar  |  climate change
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Motoring
 

Thirty and still single? There’s hope!

Are you thirty and still single, without even a hint of a prospect on the horizon? Then read this!

 
 

Men24.com

SA’s Playboy Playmate of the year in action!
12 lies everyone accepts as fact
Hottie of the day: Charlotte
Breakup text goes viral and it’s hilarious!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

C# Developer

Cape Town CBD
Communicate Cape Town IT
R20 000 - R25 000 Per Month

Sales Consultant

Western Cape
Pinagare Human Capital Specialists
R12 000 Per Month

Creditors Supervisor

Cape Town CBD
Network Finance Sunninghill
R300 000 - R320 000 Per Year

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

It may be hard to stay cool, calm and collected. Your emotions can get quite heated in the moment. You may benefit from finding a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.