Things are going in the wrong direction regarding tackling climate change. That is the conclusion of a new United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO) climate report, published Tuesday.
The report highlights how existing aspirations for tackling climate change and reality diverge widely. If more ambitious action is not taken soon, climate change’s physical and socio-economic impact will be “devastating”, the warning reads.
According to the WMO report called United in Science, greenhouse gas emissions are still reaching record highs. In addition, fossil fuel emissions are back to pre-coronavirus levels. During the pandemic, emissions decreased due to lockdowns.
The past seven years have been the warmest on record, and there is a 48 percent chance of reaching an average temperature 1.5 degrees higher than the average temperature between 1850 and 1900 in at least one of the next five years. According to the report, it cannot be ruled out that the state of the climate is reaching certain “tipping points”.
“Floods, droughts, heat waves, extreme storms and wildfires are getting worse. An alarming amount of records are being broken. Heat waves in Europe. Colossal floods in Pakistan. Continued severe drought in China, the Horn of Africa and the United States. There is nothing. It is natural to the new scale at which these disasters are happening. It is the price we pay for humanity’s addiction to fossil fuels,” UN chief António Guterres said in response to the report.
“This year’s United in Science report shows that climate impacts are heading into the uncharted territory of devastation. Yet we cannot let go of the fossil fuel addiction, even as symptoms continue to worsen,” said Guterres…