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Volume 604 Issue 7905, 14 April 2022

Climate pledges

The Paris climate agreement adopted in December 2015 saw nations around the world commit to limiting global warming to well below 2 °C above pre-industrial levels, and to pursue efforts to limit warming to 1.5 °C. But limited pledges on emissions cuts at the time suggested this goal would be tough to realize. In this week’s issue, Malte Meinshausen and his colleagues analyse the national climate targets put on the table since 2015. The researchers found that if all commitments so far made by nations were to be fully implemented then it would be possible to limit warming to just below 2 °C. They further note that to limit warming to well below 2 °C or 1.5 °C would require a strengthening of pledges for 2030, actions to match these promises and a longer-term target of net-zero CO2 emissions by the middle of the century.

Cover image: K. Krause/Nature

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  • News & Views

    • Analysis of climate pledges by nations at the COP26 meeting indicates that such commitments could ensure that global warming does not exceed 2 ºC before 2100 — but only if backed up by short-term policies.

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      • Frances C. Moore
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    • Skin cells called melanocytes are not equally affected by the same genetic changes. Their ability to form tumours has now been linked to gene-expression programs that are selectively activated according to a cell’s anatomical position.

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      • María S. Soengas
      News & Views
    • The polarization, wavelength and power of a light wave can be simultaneously identified by a compact device made from twisted layers of carbon atoms — with a little help from an artificial neural network.

      • Justin C. W. Song
      • Yidong Chong
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    • Chemical synthesis often relies on reactions catalysed by transition metals. Electrochemical methods have now been developed that negate this need, opening up pathways to previously challenging reactions.

      • Charlotte Willans
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