Countries need to  turn their Carbon Neutral Pledges into Climate Action

Ten UN and international agency chiefs, including the World Meteorological Organization, are urging states to turn their carbon neutral commitments into climate action ahead of next week’s climate conference in Scotland. 

Scientists studying the effects of human activities on global warming believe the scientific argument for immediate climate action is unmistakable. They point out that rising temperatures have resulted in higher sea levels as well as more frequent and severe extreme weather events including hurricanes, heat waves, and excessive rainfall. 

The leaders of the United Nations and international agencies have issued a united and urgent appeal to states to priorities climate action, particularly in the area of water. They argue that immediate action is required to address climate change’s water-related impacts. 

Climate change is having a significant impact on the water cycle, making droughts and floods more harsh and frequent, and reducing natural water storage in ice and snow. Changes in precipitation patterns are already having an influence on agriculture, food systems, and livelihoods, as well as ecosystems and biodiversity. Communities, infrastructure, coastal habitats, and aquifers are all threatened by rising sea levels. 

Participants at next week’s “make-or-break climate summit” are likely to pledge to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The goal is to keep global warming to one to two degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels to avoid climate change. 

At this time, the concentrations in the atmosphere are at all-time highs. Even if we achieve carbon neutrality tomorrow, the climate system’s inertia, particularly in the ocean, means that heat will continue to rise for several decades after that.