The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), released on August 9, looks at changes in the Earth’s climate in all regions and in the climate system as a whole.
The report «Climate Change 2021: Physical Bases» points out that only a substantial and sustained reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases will limit climate change. If governments, businesses and society start to act now, we will have a faster and more visible improvement in air quality, but it may take 20-30 years for global temperatures to stabilize.
The report offers new estimates on the possibility of global warming of 1.5° C in the coming decades, and concludes that, unless greenhouse gas emissions are reduced immediately, rapidly and on a large scale, limiting the global warming to about 1.5°C or even 2°C will be an unattainable goal.
Many of the characteristics of climate change depend directly on the level of global warming. Projections indicate that climate changes will increase in all regions in the coming decades. According to the report, with global warming of 1.5 °C, there will be an increase in heat waves, warm seasons will lengthen, and cold seasons will shorten; while with a global warming of 2 °C, extreme heat events would more frequently reach critical tolerance thresholds for agriculture and health.
But the problem is not just a matter of temperature. Other changes result from increased warming, particularly in humidity and dryness, winds, snow and ice, as well as coastal areas and oceans.
Human actions can determine the future course of the climate. The main one is to achieve zero net carbon emissions.
The Global Covenant of Mayors (GCoM) drives climate action by local governments
Many cities are taking concrete steps and willing to do even more to achieve a net-zero emissions future.
In the Americas, 787 cities have committed to the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (GCoM) and have agreed to advance climate action in three key areas: reducing greenhouse gas emissions, identifying and adapting to risks associated with climate change and increasing access to clean and affordable energy.
We need to act now. If your city wants to do more for the future, you can join the largest global alliance of mayors committed to the climate. The initiative provides local governments with a broad support structure, which includes institutions allied to the GCoM to facilitate their progress. Your city can count on the help of the National Coordinators in your country and the Helpdesk of the Global Covenant of Mayors throughout the entire process. In addition, the GCoM also disseminates information on financing opportunities that support initiatives related to sustainable and equitable development and grant access to global and regional events for the exchange of good practices.
The Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy is a powerful and historic response to climate change from cities around the world. The Covenant has become the largest alliance against climate change, reducing its inevitable impacts and facilitating access to clean and affordable energy. Built with the commitment of more than 11,000 cities around the world, this alliance strengthens the capacities and climate actions of local governments and sub-national authorities.
For more information about the GCoM, contact us at: [email protected]
The Global Covenant of Mayors (GCoM) encourages adherence to the Race to Zero
The global campaign Race to Zero of the United Nations (UN), brings together actors from all over the world committed to an economic, ecological and resilient recovery and to the achievement of net zero emissions by 2050.
Cities that join the GCoM already commit to setting measurable emissions targets equal to or more ambitious than the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) of their respective governments under the Paris Agreement.
While the commitment to reach net zero by 2050 is not a requirement for the GCoM, the Race to Zero (RtZ) and Race to Resilience (RtR) campaigns align with the GCoM vision and mission and share the same goal of accelerating the climate action and strengthening the resilience of communities against the effects of climate change.
Click here for more information on the Race to Zero.