Commenting on a report published today by the UN analysing countries updated pledges to tackle the climate crisis under the Paris Agreement, Friends of the Earth Scotland Head of Campaigns Mary Church said:

“The UN’s assessment of updated global commitments to tackle the climate emergency is a wake up call to anyone who thought world leaders were taking the climate crisis seriously. Five years on from the Paris Agreement, and only 8 months away from the COP26 summit, we are still on track for temperature increases well beyond the crucial 1.5oC threshold.

“Despite all the climate leadership rhetoric from the UK and EU they have submitted half hearted pledges that fail to reflect their role in causing the climate crisis and their responsibility to act to bring down emissions.

“Rich countries, including the UK, need to go away, do their sums again and come back with plans that reflect their fair share of climate action to give us any chance of averting climate breakdown.”


The UNFCCC report is available at: https://unfccc.int/sites/default/files/resource/cma2021_02_adv.pdf

The UNFCCC synthesis report shows that:

  • 48 updated nationally determined contributions (NDCs) have been submitted by the end of 2020, representing 75 countries (the EU which counts as one party), including the UK, accounting for approximately 30% of global emissions
  • the combined impact by 2030 of these parties cumulative emissions are estimated to be only 0.5% lower than in 2010
  • the IPCC has warned that emissions must reduce by 45% by 2030 to keep to the 1.5oC threshold
  • The US, Canada and China have still not submitted updated plans

Under a fair shares analysis, informed by the Climate Equity Reference Project, whose methodology is rooted in the science of remaining carbon budgets and the principles of equity under the UNFCCC, the UK is responsible for 200% emissions reductions by 2030, meaning that current emissions reductions targets are far from sufficient and less than half the story: https://www.christianaid.org.uk/sites/default/files/2020-03/FairShareUK_Infographic.pdf

Friends of the Earth Scotland is:

* Scotland’s leading environmental campaigning organisation

* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland

* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 75 national member groups, and 5,000 local activist groups.