The challenges of mitigating climate change include reducing greenhouse gas emissions, halting deforestation, curbing land degradation, fighting sea level rise, preventing droughts and floods, and retrofitting buildings to make them more energy-efficient.
Placing the blame mostly on the world's industrial nations, the report pointedly says the climate crisis is the result of the very uneven pattern of economic development that evolved over the past two centuries. 3)
Outlining the gravity of climate change, he said the current undisputed scientific evidence shows that even with 50-80 percent cuts in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, "there is a high probability that we will not stay below a 2-degree rise in global temperatures which is considered already dangerously high." 4)
"Hence cuts in emissions will have to be drastic and timely," said Vos.
"This challenge comes at the same time as we should expect energy demand to rise substantially in the coming decades if we wish to allow poor countries to pursue their right to development."
He said meeting both challenges will require a big push into energy efficiency and low-carbon, renewable energy sources. 5)
What is needed next is to convince policy makers that while seemingly large investments will need to be made now, the cost of not making these will be immensely larger than the costs that we estimate are needed," Vos said.
It should also be clear that leaders in the developed countries should lead the action towards more ambitious emission reduction. 6)
Vos also pointed out that developed countries have grown rich while emitting most of the greenhouse gases that are now in the atmosphere.
They also have a moral obligation to support developing countries in avoiding the same growth pattern of "polluting first and cleaning up later". 7)
"But this is not just a matter of justice and survival. There is a win-win solution here: large-scale investments in renewable energy will provide...
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