UNEP - Bridging the Emissions Gap 2013

Published: 05/11/2013

One of the fundamental questions in the global climate negotiations is: what level of “ambition”, in terms of collective emission reductions, is needed to protect global climate? To help answer this question UNEP and the scientific community have published a series of reports on the “emissions gap” since 2010. Of particular interest to the ambition question is the gap in 2020 between emission levels consistent with the 2°C climate target and emissions levels projected if country reduction pledges are fulfilled.

The Emissions Gap Report 2013 - involving 44 scientific groups in 17 countries and coordinated by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) finds that although pathways exist that could reach the 2°C target with higher emissions, not narrowing the gap will exacerbate mitigation challenges after 2020.

The report however finds, that the stepping stone of the 2020 target can still be achieved by strengthening current pledges and by further action, including scaling up international cooperation initiatives in areas such as energy efficiency, fossil fuel subsidy reform and renewable energy.

As key supporters and contributors to the UNEP Emissions Gap report since its inception Ecofys continued this year by providing lead and contributing authors for the 2013 report. The report uses Ecofys’ analysis from the Climate Action Tracker (chapter 2), a summary of potential impact of cooperative initiatives (chapter 5) as well as a review of global mitigation potential and a summary of options to reduce the gap (chapter 6).

The full report is available for download at unep.org.

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Kornelis Blok
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UNEP Emissions Gap Report