If we are to limit warming to below the Paris Agreement's two degrees Celsius target, green innovations must be developed and spread globally 10 times faster than in the past, suggests a study.
"Based on our calculations, we won't meet the climate warming goals set by the Paris Agreement unless we speed up the spread of clean technology by a full order of magnitude, or about ten times faster than in the past," said lead researcher Gabriele Manoli from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, US.
‘The per-capita CO2 emissions have increased about 100 percent every 60 years -- typically in big jumps -- since then.’
"Radically new strategies to implement technological advances on a global scale and at unprecedented rates are needed if current emissions goals are to be achieved," Manoli said.
The study used delayed differential equations to calculate the pace at which global per-capita emissions of carbon dioxide have increased since the Second Industrial Revolution -- a period of rapid industrialisation at the end of the 19th century and start of the 20th.
The analysis showed that per-capita CO2 emissions have increased about 100 percent every 60 years -- typically in big jumps -- since then. The researchers then compared this pace to the speed of new innovations in low-carbon-emitting technologies.
Using these historical trends coupled with projections of future global population growth, Manoli and his colleagues were able to estimate the likely pace of future emissions increases and also determine the speed at which climate-friendly technological innovation and implementation must occur to hold warming below the Paris Agreement's two degrees Celsius target.
"It's no longer enough to have emissions-reducing technologies," Manoli said. "We must scale them up and spread them globally at unprecedented speeds," he added. The findings were published in the journal Earth's Future.