Global struggle to curb emissions
October 26, 2021 - Together, China, the U.S., the European Union and India are responsible for more than 60% of global carbon emissions. While the U.S. and EU are cutting CO2 use, China and India expect their emissions to keep rising.
In April, President Biden announced that America would aim to cut its greenhouse gas emissions 50 percent to 52 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. This followed renewed pledges from other developed countries. Under the European “Green Deal” the EU’s emissions reduction goal under the Paris Agreement has been increased its emissions reduction target to 55 per cent below 1990 levels by 2030.
Canada also updated its climate goals, committing to a 40 per cent to 45 per cent cut below 2005 levels by 2030, and Japan has also announced it will strengthen its target to a 44 per cent cut below 2005 levels by 2030.
However, China and India still expect their emissions to either plateau or keep rising over the next decade.
Under the Paris climate deal reached in 2015, China pledged that its emissions would peak around 2030. Since then President Xi Jinping has promised to reach “carbon neutrality” -- meaning China’s net carbon emissions will reach zero -- by 2060.
According to the Climate Action Tracker (CAT), China’s emissions under its current policies projections are projected to reach 13.2 to 14.5 gigatonnes of CO2-equivalent (GtCO2e) by 2030. CAT concludes that China’s current policies are “insufficient” to meet the Paris agreements 1.5°C limit, and are more consistent with a global warming of 3°C.
India has not yet set a date for when its emissions will peak -- pointing out that the nation is much poorer than the U.S. or EU, and it is unfair to hold them to the same standards. Under current policies and action, greenhouse gas emissions are projected to reach a level of 3.8-4.0GtCO2e in 2030.