Fossil gas: a bridge to nowhere

The war in Ukraine and the on-going energy crisis have made it clear that a green energy transition is not only essential for avoiding the worst impacts of climate change. It is also a security matter. While there is growing consensus on the need for a power sector coal phase-out, fossil gas has largely flown under the radar.

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G7 climate policy: what good looks like

At the UN climate summit COP26, governments made a collective commitment to bring forward 2030 targets this year that are in line with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C temperature goal. This policy brief outlines six key policy recommendations for this June’s G7 summit that, if adopted, would demonstrate the ambition and leadership needed to keep the 1.5°C limit in sight and to maintain the momentum that was developed at COP26.

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Why gas is the new coal

Gas has no place in a 1.5˚C world, and its use should already have peaked, but instead the expansion of the industry continues to rise. Gas is not a “bridging fuel”, it is still a fossil fuel, and to reach the Paris Agreement’s warming limit, governments, investors and multilateral finance institutions must treat it the same way they do coal: target gas for a swift phase-out.

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The Climate Action Tracker

The Climate action tracker is an independent scientific analysis that tracks government climate action and measures it against the globally agreed Paris Agreement aim of “holding warming well below 2°C, and pursuing efforts to limit warming to 1.5°C.”

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1.5°C national pathway explorer

Explore 1.5°C national pathways for countries and sector-specific decarbonisation benchmarks derived from global IPCC pathways compatible with the Paris Agreement.

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Climate impact explorer

This tool shows how the severity of climate change impacts will increase over time in regions, countries and provinces at different levels of warming, starting with 1.5°C, the limit in the Paris Agreement. It also allows access to the underlying data.

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Coal Phase Out

Coal is the most carbon intensive fossil fuel and phasing it out is a key step to achieve the emissions reductions needed to limit global warming to 1.5°C, as enshrined in the Paris Agreement. Most emissions from coal are in the electricity sector and, as we already have the technologies that can replace coal, phase out is a relatively cheap and easy option to reduce emissions. Our research shows coal needs to be phased out globally by 2040 to meet the commitments made in Paris.

1.5°C

Since 2009 over a hundred Small Island Developing States, Least Developed Countries and many others have been calling for limiting global temperature rise to below 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. Placing the 1.5°C limit alongside the legally binding goal to hold global temperatures “well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels” in the Paris Agreement was a major victory for vulnerable countries. This page is an information pool for material around the 1.5°C temperature limit.

Media coverage

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Scientists say new climate law is likely to reduce warming

Scientists say new climate law is likely to reduce warming

In an interview with the Associated Press, Bill Hare says the new climate bill signed into law is the biggest thing to ever happen on climate policy in the United States. In response to the legislation, other nations will be more likely to take action to reduce future warming.

16 August 2022

Climate change’s impact intensifies as U.S. prepares to take action

Climate change’s impact intensifies as U.S. prepares to take action

Bill Hare speaks with the Washington Post about the possible ripple effects of the historic Inflation Reduction Act. Despite this step in the right direction, there are many forces that continue to push the world off track from limiting temperature rise to 1.5 degrees.

11 August 2022

Publications

This study analyses six institutional decarbonisation scenarios published between 2020 and mid 2021, including four from the oil majors (two from BP), and two developed by the International Energy Agency IEA. It finds that most of the scenarios would be classified as inconsistent with the Paris Agreement as they fail to limit warming to ‘well below 2 ̊C, let alone 1.5 ̊C, and would exceed the 1.5 ̊C warming limit by a significant margin.