A new report issued October 8 by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a body within the United Nations, found that a continuation of greenhouse gas emissions at their current rate could warm the atmosphere by as much as 2.7 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 degrees Celsius) by 2040.
“One of the key messages that comes out very strongly from this report is that we are already seeing the consequences of 1°C of global warming through more extreme weather, rising sea levels and diminishing Arctic sea ice, among other changes,” said Panmao Zhai, Co-Chair of one of the IPCC working groups.
The report finds that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require “rapid and far-reaching” transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050. This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2 from the air.
Concerns about global warming have been one of the major arguments voiced in opposition to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the Mountain Valley Pipeline due to the release of methane, a potent greenhouse gas, through leaks from natural gas pipelines, and because the construction of more natural gas pipelines encourages the expanded use of fossil fuels at a time when a greater reliance on renewable sources of energy should instead be encouraged.
A link to the IPCC report is here.