We are already most likely over +1.0 dec C Global Warming in 2019
12 years to limit climate change catastrophe warns UN following the 48th session of the IPCC, late 2018
‘System Change – Not Climate Change’Greta Thunberg
The world has already been seeing major coral reef die off since late 1990’s. If warming is kept to 1.5C, coral reefs will still decline by 70-90% but if temperatures rise to 2C, virtually all of the world’s reefs would be lost.
By 2100, global sea level rise would be 10cm lower with global warming of 1.5C compared with 2C
Extreme heatwaves will be experienced by 14% of the world’s population at least once every five years at 1.5C. But if that figure rises to 2C, more than a third of the planet could suffer extreme temperatures.
Arctic sea ice would remain during most summers if warming is kept to 1.5C. But at 2C, ice free summers are 10 times more likely, leading to greater habitat losses for polar bears, whales, seals and sea birds.
At 1.5C the proportion of the global population exposed to water stress could be 50% lower than at 2C
At 2C extremely hot days, such as those experienced in the northern hemisphere summer 2018, would become more severe and common, increasing heat-related deaths and causing more forest fires
The greatest difference would be to nature. Insects, which are vital
for pollination of crops, and plants are almost twice as likely to lose
half their habitat at 2C compared with 1.5C
Oceans are already suffering from elevated acidity and lower levels of oxygen as a result of climate change. One model shows marine fisheries would lose 3m tonnes production at 2C, twice the decline at 1.5C.
Consider an Electric car which can charge using the 35-40% renewable energy now in the UK electricity Grid, especially during sunny or windy weather when electricity is generate by wind turbine or solar panel farms. The best time to charge is overnight during low grid demand.
Try and reduce your own energy usage at home. Insulate to reduce your heating energy consumption. Use less water to help utility companies. Use LED lighting at home and at work to reduce electricity bills.
Consider generating your own electricity using solar panels or wind turbines.
Look into renewable heat incentives which promote the use of air source heating, ground source heat pumps and biomass heating systems.
Consider your whole carbon footprint including air travel, eating less meat or other high CO2 foods.
Lobby your local government to encourage green technology investment.
The IPCC maps out four pathways to achieve 1.5C, with different combinations of land use and technological change. Reforestation is essential to all of them as are shifts to electric transport systems and greater adoption of carbon capture technology.
Carbon pollution would have to come down to zero by 2050 to meet the 1.5 deg C increase. This would require carbon prices that are three to four times higher than for a 2C target. But the costs of doing nothing would be far higher.
ZERO carbon emission by 2050 means no petrol or diesel for all road and rail transport, only liquid biofuels or electric cars, liquid biofuel for air travel, no coal or gas burning power stations, and no gas heating in the home to name a few. In addition to zero CO2 emissions, there would also need to be large scale carbon offsetting running alongside. Therefore, policy makers, government and power companies need to step up their efforts very quickly. After all, government has already has almost 40 years since the scientific discovery of global warming and over 20 years since the signing of the Kyoto Protocol, the first global agreement to reduce carbon emissions.