COP27 World’s dash for natural gas endangers climate goals -report

  • World ‘surpassed’ gas to deal with energy crisis – report
  • Planned new gas capacity threatens 1.5C warming limit
  • Europe rushes to replace Russian gas with alternatives

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt, Nov 10 (Reuters) – Countries scrambling this year to secure natural gas supplies to replace supplies from Russia risk years of emissions that could thwart climate goals, officials said on Thursday. the Climate Action Tracker research collaboration.

Efforts to avert disastrous climate change have been met this year with a global energy crisis due to gas scarcity and soaring fuel prices, as Russia sharply cut gas supplies to Europe after his invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

“We are seeing a major push for the expansion of fossil gas LNG production and import capacity around the world – in Europe, Africa, North America, Asia and Australia – which could ensure that global emissions exceed dangerous levels,” said Bill Hare, CEO of research institute Climate Analytics, which together with NewClimate Institute forms Climate Action Tracker (CAT).

Planned projects could emit 10% of the world’s remaining carbon budget – the cumulative amount that can be emitted if warming beyond 1.5°C is to be avoided, CAT said. Projects include new gas drilling in Canada and liquefied natural gas (LNG) import capacity in Germany and Vietnam.

Countries agreed under the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change to try to prevent greenhouse gases from heating the planet more than 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels .

Scientists have said exceeding 1.5C in warming will lead to far more severe climate impacts than the deadly wildfires, floods and rising seas already unfolding today. Currently, the world is 1.2C warmer than pre-industrial levels.

By October, Russian gas had fallen to 7.5% of gas imports from Europe, down from 40% in recent years.

The race to replace these supplies has bolstered plans to expand fossil fuel infrastructure, even as the European Union has proposed higher renewable energy targets in an attempt to replace mostly Russian fuel with energy. own.

The International Energy Agency has said no new oil and gas fields should be opened up if the world meets the 1.5C target.

The CAT also calculated that countries’ emission reduction targets in this decade would put the world on track for 2.4°C of warming, compared to a best-case scenario of 1.8°C. countries have met all of their announced commitments, including the 2050 goals – which would require a tougher climate. much greater policies and investments to switch to green energy.

Reporting by Kate Abnett; Editing by David Gregorio

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