US-China climate agreement won’t slow global warming, according to World Bank

24 Nov 2014

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The World Bank has warned that the recent US-China climate agreement is not enough to slow down global warming.

Earlier this month, US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced a deal to reduce both nations’ emissions.

The US agreed to cut greenhouse gas emissions to between 26 and 28pc below its 2005 levels by 2025, while China said it would begin reducing its carbon dioxide outpouring by about 2030. 

But according to World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim, the deal won't prevent global temperatures from rising by 2 degrees by the middle of the century.

“There’s a lot more optimism now than there was before the agreement, but there’s still a tremendous amount of work to do,” Kim told Bloomberg.

Kim’s comments came as a new climate report commissioned by the World Bank was published. As reported by CNBC, the research found that global warming of close to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial times is already locked into the Earth's atmosphere. Another similar rise could have dramatic effects.

“A world even 1.5 degrees Celsius [warmer] will mean more severe droughts and global sea level rise, increasing the risk of damage from storm surges and crop loss and raising the cost of adaptation for millions of people,” read the report.

“These changes are already underway, with global temperatures 0.8 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times, and the impact on food security, water supplies and livelihoods is just beginning.”

Last week the US government released a ‘Climate Resilience Toolkit’ to equip US states’ defences against known climate change effects. According to the White House, the toolkit “provides an online entry point for the public to access authoritative information about the impacts of climate variability and change, with tools to help people plan and prepare”.

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Dean is a freelance journalist and editor covering media.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com