With Only Two Years Left Before Real Climate Change Consequences, UN Believes It’s Too Late
For years, experts, researchers, political figures, and citizens around the world have discussed the serious impacts that climate change does and will have on the planet.
But recently, the United Nations spoke out and told the world that there is a real clock ticking on just how much longer humankind can continue as it’s going before causing absolute irreversible damage to the Earth, and it’s a lot sooner than most people thought.
UN Reports Humans Have Only Two Years to Change
According to a UN global stocktake report, if humans don’t make the necessary changes to the way they treat the planet within just two years, Earth will never fully recover from the damage they caused.
And to make matters even worse, the UN report essentially says that the changes needed in the next two years to save the planet from irrevocable harm are almost impossible to complete at this point.
Details of the UN Report
The UN global stocktake report stated clearly that “the global stocktake is unfolding in a critical decade for climate action. Global emissions need to be nearly halved by 2030 for the world to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.”
“In addition, transformational adaptation is also needed to help communities and ecosystems cope with the climate impacts that are already occurring and are expected to intensify,” it said
This Isn’t the UN’s First Warning to the World
It’s important to understand that this is not the UN’s first warning—it has been releasing studies and trying desperately to explain just how important climate change action is for years.
Last year, the UN released a climate change report which stated “the combined climate pledges of 194 Parties under the Paris Agreement could put the world on track for around 2.5 degrees Celsius of warming by the end of the century.” However, while everyone technically knows how important a course correction is, no one is actually doing enough to make a real change.
No One Is Doing Their Part
The UN stated that while eleven countries have reduced emissions, none are on even on track – let alone at their target – for the proposed emissions decrease set at the Paris Agreement in 2016.
Apparently, even those countries that have made changes will still need to quadruple their efforts if they plan to meet the goals set seven years ago.
The Pandemic Has Increased Carbon Emissions
To make matters worse, some countries that attempted to decrease their emissions are actually back to their previous numbers, due in part to the global pandemic.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) released a report that stated emissions drastically decreased during the pandemic, but currently, carbon emissions are not only where they were before the pandemic, some countries have even reached new all-time highs.
Blaming All Governments for Lack of Real Change
When it comes to saving our planet, there’s no doubt that the controlling governments around the world need to make real changes. Individuals can help, but it’s government policies and global changes that are necessary to the planet’s survival.
The UN has stated clearly that “much more is needed now on all fronts,” and that governments desperately need to start “scaling up renewable energy and phasing out all unabated fossil fuels.”
The Need to Work Together
Another huge problem the UN pointed out is that while the governments of the world are certainly not doing enough on their own to make real changes, they’re also not working together, which they definitely should be. Essentially “trillions of dollars” are needed to “meet global investment needs,” and the best course of action would be to pool together and use the globe’s collected finances to initiate these changes.
Researchers have pointed out that the US has already spent over $100 billion on the war in Ukraine and that the EU has spent billions on its military, but no one seems to be spending on protecting the planet.
Policy Change Is Even More Important Than Funding
However, the UN has made it clear that while money and technology are necessary to make major changes, it’s really political will and creativity that are needed most.
According to the report, “Creativity and innovation in policymaking and international cooperation is essential.” That means finding new and different ways to cut down or completely eliminate fossil fuels, as well as a reduction in hydrocarbon use, and increasing renewable energy sources across the board.
Big Businesses Also Need to Step Up and Make Changes
The UN report also stated that along with the world’s governments, big businesses absolutely need to make changes in order to save the planet.
Many of these companies have been called out for greenwashing, i.e., claiming to make sustainable changes without actually doing so. There are not nearly enough policies in place to force large corporations to make real changes, but the UN is asking these companies to step up and make them anyway.
Can Individuals Help Fight Climate Change?
It can feel like an uphill battle for those who want to help protect the planet. With pollution and emissions from individuals and conglomerates still at an all time high, sometimes it seems as though there’s nothing an individual can do to help.
However, the UN said that along with opting for renewable energy sources, gasoline-free vehicles, and even choosing a vegetarian diet, the most important thing a person can do is push their government for real change. That means voting for representatives who will push for climate change initiatives and spend their budget on making them happen.
What Will Happen if Changes Aren’t Made?
The UN report makes it exceptionally clear that due to a lack of initiative, it’s unrealistic that enough changes will be made in the next two years to save the planet from drastic climate change.
But what exactly will happen next? So far, scientists and researchers know that climate change will lead to more extreme weather across the planet, including storms, floods, rising sea levels, heat waves, and various other natural disasters that are doomed to wreak havoc. Exactly what the world will look like in the coming centuries is still a mystery, but it’s not looking good.