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United Nations (UN) Secretary-General António Guterres warned if the world continues on its emissions path, by 2030, it will be 22 gigatons higher than the 1.5 degree celsius limit. 


The UNEP released its annual “Emissions Gap” report headlined “Broken Record” on Monday.


Guterres continued, “The report shows that the emissions gap is more like an emissions canyon. A canyon littered with broken promises, broken lives and broken records.” 


The UNEP report calls for immediate deep emission cuts for the world to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. 


This included “four important areas for political action: setting and signalling Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) priorities; developing robust monitoring, reporting and verification systems to enhance credibility; harnessing synergies and co-benefits with other efforts; and accelerating innovation.” 


UN research found prior to October of this year, 86 days were recorded with temperatures over 1.5 degrees celsius pre-industrial levels. 


September 2023 was the warmest month ever recorded, with global average temperatures of 1.8 degrees celsius above pre-industrial levels.


The 2016 Paris Climate Agreement warned extended warming of 1.5 degrees celsius above pre-industrial averages would lead to high risks for “some regions and vulnerable ecosystems.” 


Currently, no Group of 20 (G20) nation has reduced emissions at a pace consistent with their “net-zero by 2050” targets. 


According to statistics provided by the UN, the likelihood of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees celsius is only 14 per cent by 2030.


With the Conference of the Parties to the Convention (COP) 28 next week in Dubai, we look to the high-income and high-emitting countries among the G20 to come to the table to make new climate pledges they will adhere to in the wake of this UN report.