Climate catastrophe could be reduced in a few decades if net-zero emissions are met. In a remarkable case of optimistic climate change research, experts now agree that rising world temperatures and climate change effects can stabilize in decades.
To be sure, the catch is that the findings will depend on the world’s incremental transition from fossil fuels to the point where greenhouse gas emissions reach a net-zero point, the Guardian says. This is a daunting challenge, particularly since many big countries are now behind Paris and the United States. The 2015 Negotiations. President Donald Trump has finally abandoned it. But if emissions are stopped, the latest Texas A&M University report shows that the climate might not be a lost cause after all.
The world may be barreling towards climate disaster but rapidly eliminating planet-heating emissions means global temperatures could stabilize within just a couple of decades, scientists say.
The idea that global warming could stop reasonably quickly after zero emissions were described by Covering Climate Now, a collaboration of climate-related news media, as a “game-changing new scientific understanding”
Any scientists punctuate their disquieting warnings with hopeful updates because they know that the worst-case outcome can be prevented. The new research reveals that stopping greenhouse gas emissions would break the vicious cycle of temperature warming, ice melting, flooding, and rising sea levels earlier than predicted a few years ago.
How far the earth will continue to heat up after emissions have finally been curbed—a phenomenon called “committed warming”—has been a long-standing subject of debate by scientists. While some scientists expected committed warming to continue like a freight train long after reaching net-zero emissions, the latest report reported Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change points to the opposite.
If emissions cease by 2050, “surface temperatures will stop warming and warming will stabilize within a few decades,” said Michael Mann, a climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University who did not work on the report. “What this actually means is that our behaviors have a strong and immediate effect on the warming of the surface. It brings us the Department, which is part of why it is so important to convey this new best scientific understanding.”
In the coming century, mankind will face crucial decisions on the future pollution of greenhouse gasses and their resulting effects on the planet’s atmosphere, ecosystems, and people. Atmospheric concentrations of certain large greenhouse gasses have risen significantly since the beginning of the 20th century due to human activities, and increased concentrations of these gasses are more likely to blame for much of the global average warming over the past 50 years.
Again, all these hinges on possibly avoiding carbon gases, which is a much more urgent concern than finding out what’s going to happen afterward, scientists say.
Natural hazards and human activities are considered to be the primary contributors to these increases in average global temperatures. Climate change, caused by rising carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles, factories, and power plants, will not only have an effect on the atmosphere and oceans, but it will also have an impact on Earth’s geology. Emissions of carbon dioxide due to our use of fossil fuels will change the climate and the temperature is predicted to rise by 2 to 6o Celsius by the year 2100, which is a major boost from our current average temperature of 1.7o Celsius as estimated by the IPCC.
“The problem is still very serious,” said Andrew Dessler, co-author of the study and Texas A&M University climate scientist, The Guardian, “we need to reduce emissions as quickly as possible, and then we will deal with committed warming.”