Indias climate change dilemma: Do more while United States shrugs off responsibility?

10 October, 2018, 23:13 | Author: Darnell Taylor
  • Animated chart showing that most of the coldest 10 years compared to the 20th century average were in the early 1900s while the warmest years have all been since 2000 with 2018 on course to be the fourth warmest year on record

Thanks to a poor winter and long-term drought, New Mexico's largest reservoir, Elephant Butte, is now at 3.2 percent capacity.

While the Chinese government has a policy of limiting the use of coal and of boosting the use of renewables and natural gas, it's well within the realms of wishful thinking to imagine the world's second-largest economy is on track to abandon the use of coal by 2050.

The event was jointly held by the MoNRE, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), with the participation of experts, managers, policymakers, scientists and businesspeople, among others. In a new report, the IPCC said the world's temperatures will likely reach 1.5°C between 2030 and 2052 at the current rate of warming. It notes that the contributions of glaciers to sea level rise in the present century can not be distinguished statistically. They serve as an example of the interconnectedness of climate change impacts, a characteristic that creates interacting, compounding negative effects.

That's true here in New Mexico, where average annual temperatures have already increased by 2°F just since the 1970s, according to a number of sources, including a recent report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The Council adopted conclusions on climate change that emphasize the unprecedented urgency, which is needed to step up global efforts to avoid the risky effects of climate change.

Given the lack of ambition in emission reductions so far, and major energy and land-use transformations the IPCC report claims will be needed, highly exposed countries such as Namibia and Botswana need to anticipate and plan for quite rapid changes in local weather and climate characteristics. The report also notes that "any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing Carbon dioxide from the air".

It warns that the world is rapidly running out of time before catastrophic effects on the planet take place.

Participants at the dialogue discussed activities relating to climate change response in Vietnam and seek solutions to promoting cooperation between the scientific community, entrepreneurs, organisations, partners, and individuals committed to adaptation to climate change. Even a 1.5C increase in global temperature will have severe local impacts, ushering in intensified and longer droughts and many more heatwaves.

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Australian Conservation Foundation chief executive Kelly O'Shanassy called on the government to change tactics.

Canberra also insists it is on target to meet its commitments under the Paris agreement, which attempts to unite every nation under a single accord to tackle climate change for the first time ever.

"When the federal government fails to act, we must look to states, cities, and the private sector to redouble their efforts", Udall added. These include the new European Union 2030 renewable energy target of 32%, the new energy efficiency target of 32.5%, the reform of the European Union emission trading system, the emission reduction targets in sectors falling outside the scope of ETS and the integration of land use, land use change and forestry (LULUCF) in the EU's climate and energy framework, the Council said. But it wasn't necessarily new.

"Nothing suggests world will come close to meeting this goal on climate change", Richard Haass, the president of the Council on Foreign Relations, said on Twitter.

The letter said the report highlighted that there is science, technology and money available to make a difference but political will is lacking. It has said it has no intention of scaling back fossil fuel production because without coal, household power bills would soar. "We can be simpler in the parts of the world that have benefited from fossil fuel".

Decades ago, Congress refused to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, which represented the first step toward meaningful worldwide action on climate in 1992.

All those initiatives and studies ended once Gov. Susana Martinez took office in January 2011. Ninety-one authors and review editors from 40 countries prepared the special report.

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