IEA warns of 4.3C tem­per­a­ture jump from cli­mate change

The China Post - - LIFE -

The In­ter­na­tional Energy Agency on Mon­day warned tem­per­a­tures could jump by as much as 4.3 de­grees Cel­sius by the end of the cen­tury and urged coun­tries to im­prove their pledges on re­duc­ing emis­sions.

In a re­port ahead of a cli­mate change con­fer­ence in Paris this year, the IEA said more should be done to reach the goal of keep­ing the in­crease in av­er­age global tem­per­a­ture be­low 2 de­grees Cel­sius (3.6 de­grees Fahren­heit).

Cur­rent pledges “will have a pos­i­tive im­pact on fu­ture energy trends but will fall short of the ma­jor course cor­rec­tion re­quired to meet the 2 Cel­sius goal,” said the re­port, which was pre­sented in Lon­don.

In­stead it es­ti­mated there would be an av­er­age tem­per­a­ture in­crease glob­ally of around 2.6 Cel­sius by 2100 and said the rise could be higher at 4.3 Cel­sius for coun­tries in the north­ern hemi­sphere. “The energy sec­tor must play crit­i­cal role if ef­forts to re­duce

a emis­sions are to suc­ceed. Energy pro­duc­tion and use ac­counts for two thirds of the world green­house gas emis­sions,” the IEA’s ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Maria van der Ho­even said.

The agency’s chief economist Fatih Birol said ex­treme weather events would be­come “much more fre­quent” as a re­sult, with Africa par­tic­u­larly badly af­fected de­spite only min­i­mally con­tribut­ing to the prob­lem.

Van der Ho­even stressed that “time is of the essence,” not­ing that “the cost and dif­fi­culty of mit­i­gat­ing green­house-gas emis­sions in­crease ev­ery year.”

While there is “grow­ing con­sen­sus among coun­tries that it is time to act,” strong vig­i­lance is re­quired to en­sure that the pledges are ad­e­quate and that com­mit­ments are kept, she added.

The IEA sug­gested five key mea­sures to en­sure that global en­er­gyre­lated emis­sions peak al­ready in 2020.

They

call for im­proved energy ef­fi­ciency in key in­dus­trial sec­tors, re­duc­ing the use of in­ef­fi­cient coal-fired power plants, in­creased in­vest­ment in re­new­able energy tech­nolo­gies, a grad­ual phas­ing out of fos­sil-fuel sub­si­dies and a re­duc­tion in meth­ane emis­sions in oil and gas pro­duc­tion.

“This ma­jor cli­mate mile­stone is pos­si­ble utiliz­ing only proven tech­nolo­gies and poli­cies and with­out chang­ing the eco­nomic and de­vel­op­ment prospects of any re­gion,” the IEA said.

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