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Ambitions of only two developed countries sufficiently stringent for 2°C

2010/02/03 - Only 2 out of 10 developed countries’ reduction targets submitted to the Copenhagen Accord qualify as ‘sufficient’ to keep global temperature rise below 2°C, finds the update of the ’Climate Action Tracker´. The reduction targets of all countries currently associated with the Accord are not consistent with the 2°C goal defined in the very same Accord. The current pledges leave the world heading for a global warming of over 3°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100.
Ambitions of only two developed countries sufficiently stringent for 2°C

Emissions reduction proposals by 31 January 2010. Copyright: climateactiontracker.org.

The Climate Action Tracker is a science based assessment tool developed by Ecofys, Climate Analytics and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). It regularly provides updated information on countries’ greenhouse gas reduction proposals.

The ambition level of the major countries as submitted for the Copenhagen Accord has not changed compared to the level proposed in December in Copenhagen.

Of the developed countries Russia slightly increased its ambition level, Canada decreased its ambition level, while Kazakhstan proposed a reduction target for the first time. Of the developing countries, no major countries changed their proposals. Mexico, the host country for the next climate summit in November this year, did not submit by 31 January 2010. Israel, Marshall Islands and Moldova proposed quantitative targets for the first time. Jordan and the African countries Ethiopia, Madagascar, Morocco, Congo, and Sierra Leone provided qualitative information.

Different ambitions

The Climate Action Tracker reveals major differences between the ambition levels of countries when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In the lead are the Maldives and Costa Rica, which have proposed to become climate-neutral by around 2020. At the high end of the scale are Norway, Japan and Brazil, which are proposing to reduce their emissions significantly. In the ‘medium’ range are developing countries such as India, Indonesia and South Korea, which propose to reduce the growth of their emissions by the 2020s. The EU is a special case. Its unconditional commitment of 20% reduction is rated ‘inadequate’. However, the adoption of the 30% reduction target would move the EU into the ‘medium’ range and very close to ‘sufficient’.

China is rated ‘inadequate’, because its recently announced target falls short of the ambition level that was expected from the implementation of the current national policies. Between the middle and the bottom of the scale are the United States, whose target is ’inadequate’.  At the very bottom end of the scale are countries that have yet to propose substantial action beyond ’business as usual’. Russia is among these countries.


For further information go to Methodology.

You can find the Climate Action Tracker at www.climateactiontracker.org.


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