The new ‘Mitigation of Climate Change’ report: “Without an immediate and profound reduction in emissions in all sectors, limiting global warming to 1.5 ° C is out of reach”
“In the period 2010-2019, global average annual emissions of greenhouse gases reached the highest levels in human history, but the growth rate has slowed down. Without an immediate and profound reduction in emissions across all sectors, limiting global warming to 1.5 ° C is out of reach. However, there is growing evidence of climate action. “This is what emerges from the latest report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published today. The 56th session of the IPCC approved the Summary for Policymakers of the contribution of Working Group III to the sixth assessment cycle (AR6), entitled Mitigation of Climate Change.
Since 2010, there have been, explains the IPCC in a statement, “sustained decreases of up to 85% in the costs of solar and wind energy and batteries. A growing range of policies and laws have improved energy efficiency, reduced rates of deforestation and accelerated the spread of renewable energy “.
“We are at a crossroads. The decisions we make now can ensure a liveable future. We have the tools and know-how necessary to limit warming – said the president of the IPCC Hoesung Lee – I am encouraged by the climate action undertaken in many countries. There are policies, regulations and market tools that are proving effective. If these are expanded and applied more broadly and equitably, they can support deep reductions in emissions and stimulate innovation. “
Options in all sectors to at least halve emissions by 2030
According to experts, “we have options in all sectors to at least halve emissions by 2030”. In particular, “Limiting global warming will require major transitions in the energy sector. This will result in a substantial reduction in the consumption of fossil fuels, widespread electrification, greater energy efficiency and the use of alternative fuels (such as hydrogen)”. “Having the right policies, infrastructures and technologies in place to enable changes in our lifestyle and behavior can lead to a 40-70% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Significant untapped potential – remarks the co-chairman of the ‘Ipcc Working Group III Priyadarshi Shukla – Evidence also shows that these lifestyle changes can improve our health and well-being. “
City, industry and agriculture
For the IPCC experts, “cities and other urban areas also offer significant opportunities for reducing emissions. Through lower energy consumption, electrification of transport in combination with low-emission energy sources and the enhancement of absorption and storage. of carbon using nature “.
In detail, according to the report, “reducing emissions in industry will result in the more efficient use of materials, reusing and recycling products and minimizing waste. For basic materials, including steel, construction materials and chemicals, low or zero greenhouse gas emissions production processes are being tested and very close to a commercial phase. This sector accounts for about a quarter of global emissions. Achieving net zero will be difficult and will require new production processes, low electricity and zero emissions, hydrogen and, where necessary, carbon capture and storage “.
“Agriculture, forestry and other land uses can provide large-scale emission reductions and also remove and store carbon dioxide. However, the earth cannot compensate for a delay in reducing emissions in other sectors,” clarifies the ‘Ipcc.
The Italian scenario
“The new IPCC publication carries messages of hope and alarm. The scientific community is increasingly clear-cut: to counter the climate crisis, we need to drastically accelerate the installation of renewables, increase energy efficiency measures and electrify transport “, observes Luca Iacoboni, head of National Policies for the Italian think tank Ecco, analyzing the Italian scenario in the light of the new IPCC report. “At the same time we must gradually but rapidly eliminate fossil fuels. Italy must follow this direction. For this reason, we cannot think today of expanding the production of fossil gas and the construction of new gas infrastructures, whether they are gas pipelines, regasifiers or reconverted coal-fired power plants, before giving priority to clean alternatives. We need a new logic of national security. The conflict in Ukraine has highlighted all the fragility of our energy system, which is extremely dependent on imports “, he says.” The solution cannot only be to diversify suppliers, but it is necessary to decrease this dependence by implementing energy efficiency and saving measures and unblocking the sector. of renewables, now stopped in Italy since 2014. The good news is that all this will allow us to simultaneously improve the economic and social resilience of the country, build a new economy and act to mitigate the climate crisis, as indicated by the scientific community “, he concludes .