Global average temperatures have risen about 1.1 degrees Celsius since preindustrial times. At current rates, they could exceed 1.5 degrees by 2030. And global greenhouse gas emissions, after a brief lull from 2014 to 2016, are rising again.
Even if countries can live up to their pledges in the Paris climate agreement, we’ll hit the year 2100 somewhere in the neighborhood of 3 degrees. New LSE research reveals all countries signed up to the Paris Agreement now have at least one national law or policy on climate change, but in most cases it is very little.
While as of 2015, renewable energy provided 19.3 percent of final global energy consumption. Excluding traditional biomass (burning wood for heat and cooking), it was 10.2 percent. Without hydro, that was 6.6 percent. Wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass electricity together accounted for 1.6 percent.
Clearly, demand is still outstripping production.
A report from several international agencies, including International Energy Agency (IEA), International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) shows that possibility of cutting global greenhouse gas emissions in the years and decades ahead is bleak.
Despite big gains in renewables deployment and cost reductions, and the expansion of carbon pricing, curbing CO2 is not happening nearly fast enough to prevent highly dangerous levels of warming. Emissions risen slightly last year after a 3-year plateau.
Another analysis in the journal Nature finds that “the world is on track for more than 3 °C of warming by the end of the century…Renewable energy is indeed undergoing a revolution, as prices for things such as solar panels, wind turbines and lithium-ion batteries continue to plummet. And yet it is also true that the world remains dependent on fossil fuels — so much so that even small economic shifts can quickly overwhelm the gains made with clean energy.”
Got sucked in a hole
Now there’s a hole in the sky
And the ground’s not cold
And if the ground’s not cold
Everything is gonna burn
We’ll all take turns, I’ll get mine too
This monkey’s gone to Heaven” –Pixies, This Monkey Gone to Heaven