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Rich countries will take more than 200 years to cut emissions to zero – study.


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Rich countries that have “decoupled” their economic growth from carbon emissions will take more than 200 years to reduce their emissions to net zero, a team of sustainability researchers estimates.

They calculated how long it would take 11 nations to reach net zero if they included consumption emissions – counting those emissions from goods and services where they are consumed, not produced.

At current trends, these countries would have to massively speed up their decarbonisation in order to help stop the average global temperature rising above the target set in the Paris Agreement.

International net zero strategies do not typically include these and the Paris Agreement advises that countries avoid double-counting emissions when submitting their nationally determined contributions.

Although the researchers found the UK was found to be reducing its emissions faster than the other 10 nations identified in their study, they said it will need to do so five times faster by 2025 in order to help achieve the goal of preventing the Earth heating beyond 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.


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