Here are some of the emerging key messages from the IPCC WG III report. You can download the Summary for Policymakers. The full report should be available tomorrow.
- Emissions grew faster than ever since 2000.
- Most of the growth is coming from middle income countries like China and India. Per capita emissions are still low in most developing countries, meaning a lot more growth in emissions can be expected under business as usual.
- We need a broad portfolio of solutions to solve the problem including renewables, carbon capture and storage, carbon dioxide removal, and energy efficiency. There is no silver bullet.
- Already delay is meaning that it is getting harder to stay within the 2 degree limit.
- Estimated costs of meeting this goal are still relatively low GDP would be 2-6% by 2050 than it otherwise would be. Because GDP per capita would likely double globally by 2050 this means the doubling is delayed by 1-3 years or growth is 0.005% to 0.017% lower per year than it would otherwise be in the interim.
- On the other hand, the lower estimates of costs depend on untested technologies at realistic scales to capture carbon from burning fossil fuels or to remove it directly from the atmosphere.
- There is an increased recognition of the problems of integrating renewables into energy supply systems. Costs of energy storage or backup will be crucial.
- Countries such as China are focusing heavily on the co-benefits of reducing emissions, including reducing local air pollution and improving energy security.