With rising greenhouse gas emissions, climate change is occurring at rates much faster than anticipated and its effects are clearly felt worldwide. While there are positive steps in terms of the climate finance flows and the development of nationally determined contributions, far more ambitious plans and accelerated action are needed on mitigation and adaptation. Access to finance and strengthened capacities need to be scaled up at a much faster rate, particularly for least developed countries and small island developing States.
- Increasing greenhouse gas emissions are driving climate change. In 2017, greenhouse gas concentrations reached new highs, with globally averaged mole fractions of CO2 at 405.5 parts per million (ppm), up from 400.1 ppm in 2015, and at 146 per cent of pre-industrial levels. Moving towards 2030 emission objectives compatible with the 2°C and 1.5°C pathways requires a peak to be achieved as soon as possible, followed by rapid reductions.
- As indicated under Sustainable Development Goal 1 (see para. 22 above), during the period 1998–2017, direct economic losses from disasters were estimated at almost $3 trillion. Climate-related and geophysical disasters claimed an estimated 1.3 million lives.
- As of April 2019, 185 parties had ratified the Paris Agreement. Parties to the Paris Agreement are expected to prepare, communicate and maintain successive nationally determined contributions, and 183 parties had communicated their first nationally determined contributions to the secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, while 1 party had communicated its second. Under the Agreement, all parties are required to submit new nationally determined contributions, containing revised and much more ambitious targets, by 2020.
- Global climate finance flows increased by 17 per cent in the period 2015–2016 compared with the period 2013–2014.
- As at 20 May 2019, 28 countries had accessed Green Climate Fund grant financing for the formulation of national adaptation plans and other adaptation planning processes, with a value of $75 million. Of these, 67 per cent were for least developed countries, small island developing States and African States. Proposals from an additional seven countries, with a value of $17 million, are in the final stage of approval. In total, 75 countries are seeking support from the Green Climate Fund for national adaptation plans and other adaptation planning processes, with a combined value of $191 million.
Source: Sustainable Development Knowledge Platform (https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdg13)