The UN Environment Emissions Gap Report 2021: The Heat Is On released today reminds countries across the world the urgent need to accelerate emissions cuts to avoid heading towards catastrophic climate change.

Brussels, October 26th 2021 – Less than a week before the Climate Summit in Glasgow (COP26), the UN report sounds the alarm bells as the world is leading towards a rise in temperature of 2.7°C by the end of the century, far above the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C. Governments pledges and measures in place are still woefully inadequate and inconsistent with promises for action in the long-term.

It is still possible to change course, but urgent action is needed. To keep the crucial 1.5°C goal within reach, annual greenhouse gas emissions need to be cut by halve over the next eight years, the UN report shows.

Chiara Martinelli, director of Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe said:
“This report yet again shows us the undeniable math that emission reductions need to be dramatically sped up all over the world if we want to avert dangerous climate change.
World leaders meeting at the COP26 in Glasgow have to back up their commitment to the 1.5°C goal of the Paris Agreement with concrete short-term action on the ground and make sure that they walk the talk at home.
Putting all hands on deck and cutting emissions by at least 65% by 2030 is Europe’s fair contribution within its borders to achieving the Paris Agreement goal”, added Chiara Martinelli.

The European Union needs to reduce its emissions by at least 65% by 2030 to be in line with the 1.5°C trajectory. EU law-makers should ensure that EU climate and energy laws currently under review are aligned with the highest plausible climate ambition and ensure we go well beyond the EU’s overall -55% net emissions target.

A new study by Climate Analytics shows that there are several decarbonisation pathways that can put the EU and its Member States on track for meeting the climate goal of limiting the global temperature rise to 1.5°C by the end of this century. All of these pathways entail steep emission reductions by 2030, a strong reduction of energy consumption, while multiplying renewable energy capacities.

Notes to editors:
Emissions Gap Report 2021: The Heat Is On (UNEP, October 2021)
Building a Paris Agreement Compatible (PAC) energy scenario (CAN Europe, June 2020)
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) (IPCC, August, 2021)
1.5°C Pathways for Europe: Achieving the highest plausible climate ambition (Climate Analytics, October 2021)
Trends and Projections in Europe 2021 by the European Environment Agency (EEA assessment, October 2021) released today estimates that the EU achieved its three 2020 climate and energy targets of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 20% compared to 1990 levels, increasing the share of renewable energy use to 20%, and improving energy efficiency by 20 %.



Nina Tramullas, Communications Coordinator,

Klaus Röhrig, EU Climate and Energy Policy Coordinator,