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Wave of net zero emission targets opens window to meeting the Paris Agreement

Abstract

National net zero emission targets could, if fully implemented, reduce best estimates of projected global average temperature increase to 2.0–2.4 °C by 2100, bringing the Paris Agreement temperature goal within reach. A total of 131 countries are discussing, have announced or have adopted net zero targets, covering 72% of global emissions. These targets could substantially lower projected warming as compared to currently implemented policies (2.9–3.2 °C) or pledges submitted to the Paris Agreement (2.4–2.9 °C).

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Fig. 1: Estimates of temperature increase in 2100 above pre-industrial level as assessed by both the scenario inference and scenario construction approaches.

Data availability

Global emissions data used by the CAT approach as well as associated figure code are available at https://github.com/climate-analytics/wave_of_net_zero_targets. All other data not already available in publicly available locations are made available in the  Supplementary Tables.

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Acknowledgements

We acknowledge the work of the IAM modellers for developing the IPCC AR5 and SR15 scenario databases and the MAGICC climate modelling team. N.H., M.J.G., F.H, C.F., A.G., M.L.J., S.G-Z, S.M. and W.H acknowledge funding support from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety (grant no. 16_I_291_Global_A_CAT). J.R. acknowledges support by funding through the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme under grant no. 820829 (CONSTRAIN).

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Contributions

All authors contributed to parts of the research and analysis. N.H. and M.G. conceived of and coordinated the writing of the paper. N.H., M.G., M.d.E. and J.R. developed the initial draft of the paper. J.R. and A.G. produced the figures and data tables. All authors contributed to the interpretation and analysis of the results as well as writing the paper.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Niklas Höhne or Matthew J. Gidden.

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The authors declare no competing interests.

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Peer review information Nature Climate Change thanks Stefano Caserini, Rob Dellink, Kejun Jiang and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.

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Supplementary information

Supplementary Information

Supplementary Figs. 1–3, Discussion, Tables 1–5 and References.

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Höhne, N., Gidden, M.J., den Elzen, M. et al. Wave of net zero emission targets opens window to meeting the Paris Agreement. Nat. Clim. Chang. 11, 820–822 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-021-01142-2

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