Slow route to net zero will worsen global climate crisis, IPCC chief warns
(The Guardian, 3 Oct 2023) Even if the 2050 goal is still met, postponing action – as the UK has done – will cause more heat and damage.
Postponing action and taking a slower route to net zero emissions by 2050 will worsen the climate crisis even if the goal is still reached by that date, the new chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has warned.
Prof Jim Skea also said that approving new oil and gas fields only increased the already large amount of reserves that will have to be kept in the ground if global heating limits are to be reached.
The IPCC is the world’s foremost authority on climate change, under which thousands of the world’s best experts give advice to the 195 nations that founded the body. It does not comment on the climate policies of individual nations, but Skea’s comments on Monday clearly indicate that the recent actions of the UK government has slowed climate action, despite IPCC scientists warning of “a rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a livable and sustainable future for all”.
Rishi Sunak weakened or abolished a number of green measures recently, including pushing back a ban on the sale of new petrol cars from 2030 to 2035. The UK also approved the exploitation of the large Rosebank oil fieldnear Shetland on Wednesday.