Russian scientists analyzed the legal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions in countries responsible for the bulk of emissions of these gases on the planet. The researchers concluded that current legal standards in most countries will not allow the world to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement and keep warming within 1.5-2 °C compared to pre-industrial levels. The results of the work are presented on conferences “Climate 2023”.
The fight against climate change is impossible without the joint efforts of all states on the planet. Politicians, using in particular the mechanisms provided by the United Nations, regularly try to establish dialogue on the problem of global warming and coordinate the actions of different countries. One of the most important achievements in this area was the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2015 under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, adopted back in 1992. Currently Agreement signed 193 countries and the European Union.
The Paris Agreement aims to keep global warming to 1.5-2°C by the end of the century compared to pre-industrial levels. The states that signed the document pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and implement various adaptation mechanisms to climate change. Developed countries should help developing countries, for whom the transition to an environmentally friendly and carbon-free economy is difficult. However, today most experts doubt that the goals of the Paris Agreement can be achieved.
Russian scientists from the Institute of Natural-Technical Systems of the Russian Academy of Sciences analyzed the legal regulation of greenhouse gas emissions in countries that account for 75% of total emissions. They also examined published data on greenhouse gas emissions going back to 1990.
After analyzing the available data, experts came to the conclusion that the existing climate regulation in most countries responsible for the bulk of emissions makes achieving the goals of the Paris Agreement almost impossible. If, in the next few years, all leading issuing states do not adopt legally binding political and legal acts aimed at achieving the goals of the treaty, then by the end of the century the average temperature on the globe will significantly exceed 2 °C.
According to scientists, even if participating countries implement most of the declarative statements, the temperature will rise by at least 2.1–3.5 °C by the end of the century.
The material was prepared with the financial support of the Russian Ministry of Education and Science as part of the federal project “Popularization of Science and Technology.”