The temperature difference of 0.5 degrees C appears very small, but is the difference between life and disaster for millions around the world, Joy Jacqueline Pereira, vice-chair of Working Group II of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, issued the warning on Friday at an online seminar titled "Climate Changes: Challenges for Asian Nations".
Since the pre-industrial period, the temperature has risen by 1 degree C, putting it on course to reach 1.5 degrees C, she said.
If the goal is accomplished, global carbon emissions will peak before 2030. To achieve a pathway compatible to 1.5 degrees C, warming and carbon dioxide emissions should fall by 45 percent by 2030, reaching net zero emissions around 2050 with deep cuts in methane and other pollution, Pereira said.
But she added that despite the scientific road map, political and societal resolve is necessary to accelerate the reduction of carbon emissions.
The high-level conference was co-organized by China Daily, the University of International Business and Economics, Shanghai International Studies University, and the Asia News Network, an alliance of 23 of the leading media outlets across 21 Asian countries.
Zhou Shuchun, Standing Committee member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference National Committee, and editor-in-chief of China Daily, said that China will make every effort to fully implement the United Nations' 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, achieve the peak of carbon dioxide emissions before 2030, and realize carbon neutrality before 2060.
Zhou cited President Xi Jinping's remarks at the Climate Ambition Summit at the end of last year to further elaborate on China's beliefs and visions on combating global warming.
"In meeting the climate challenge, no one can be aloof, and unilateralism will get us nowhere. Only by upholding multilateralism, unity and cooperation can we deliver shared benefits and win-win for all nations," Xi said.
China, a firm believer in upholding multilateralism, solidarity and cooperation to fight climate change, has been an active participant in international conservation and climate change conferences, Zhou said.
Gao Xiang, a professor and division director of International Policy Research at National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation, concurred on China's commitments to cut carbon dioxide emissions.
He said that efforts have been made in the nation's energy sector, the biggest source of carbon emissions, by switching to renewable energy and the use of technology and other measures to improve energy efficiency.
Research on climate science is another key focus for China in tackling the issue, Gao said.
China has been working closely with experts from the United Nations to enhance technology development and deployment to mitigate and adapt to climate change, he said.
Gao called for greater support, including financial resources and technology, for developing countries to help them achieve their planned targets for carbon emissions. Failure to accomplish such goals will be borne by the whole world, he said.
Published : February 09, 2021
By : Xu Weiwei China Daily/ANN