In the latest DNV GL Talks Energy podcast series, Jose Maria Figueres, former President of Costa Rica, and Co-Chair of the Global Ocean Commission, and Christiana Figueres, former Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change talked about the progress being made regarding the maximum temperature increase of 2 degrees.
Talking in the DNV GL Talks Energy podcast series during the Singapore International Energy Week 2017, Jose Maria Figueres and Christiana Figueres, are addressing the issues of keeping the increase of temperature to 2 degrees and say that in order to achieve this, a wide cooperation is necessary.
Namely, a scenario that temperature will increase over 2 degrees would be catastrophic. In order to achiever the 2 degrees goal, the world must aim to keep temperature’s increase in 1.5.
“If we were to get to 2.5 it would be a disaster. We cannot go above 2. Anything above 2 has already been determined by the risk gurus of this economy, who is the insurance industry, they told me very clearly, and it wasn’t one company, the insurance industry determined before Paris that if we go above 2 degrees, the world would move into a situation that is systemically uninsurable,” Christiana Figueres said.
Furthermore, they both said that although it is now understood what needs to be done in order to prevent an increase over 2 degrees, the governments are not doing much.
“The fact is nobody is doing enough, because we still haven’t closed the gap of where we need to be, and that is why there is an urgency now for everyone to truly focus and accelerate actions over the next three years, because it is the next three years – the policies and the investment that we’re going to make over the next three years, that are going to largely determine whether we can get on track or not,” Christiana Figueres added.
Apart from the human factor, nature and specifically the oceans contribute to a healthier environment. Namely, oceans fix 25% of carbon emissions and has also fixed about 90% of the increase of heat that the planet has had since 1970, giving us time to implement a low-carbon economy.
Finally, when asked about if anything can be done in order to reverse the current situation Jose Maria Figueres said that a lot can be done and is already being done.
In particular, she said: “There are a lot of things that we already know, and we should be implementing all of them. Replanting coral reefs is something that is being done in Asia and it is being done elsewhere, and that is a good promise for replenishing the biodiversity and the health of the ocean, but there are things that we still have to figure out. But the entire discussion has to be looked at in a positive limelight. You can choose to see the glass half empty or half full, and if we look at it half full, as I believe it is, getting carbon emissions down, reversing the trend and restoring the health of the ocean is actually the most important economic and wealth creating opportunity that humanity has had in a long, long time.”