Nearly half of global GDP produced in locations with net zero emission targets
Published March 24, 2020
Nearly half of the world’s gross domestic
product (GDP) is now generated in places where authorities have set or intend to
set a target of bringing carbon emissions to net zero in or before 2050.
Net zero emissions targets now apply to
nations, regions, and cities that account for nearly half of the world’s annual
GDP, according to calculations produced by the London-based Energy and Climate
Intelligence Unit (ECIU).
The analysis shows that 49% of the world’s
GDP is generated in places that have set or intend to set a 2050 net zero
target. Net zero targets now apply to 121 nations producing just over $39
trillion of GDP.
The list includes places with net zero
targets at various levels of development: where the target is under active
political discussion, where leaders have made a political declaration, where
legislation is under development, and where it has been enacted.
Nikki Wilson, Alfa Energy’s Carbon Compliance Manager, said:
“It is encouraging that such a high proportion of countries and cities have taken action to set a net zero target over a relatively short period of time. It is now essential for governments and authorities to put effective policies in place, that will encourage companies, public authorities, and individuals to take action towards these net zero targets.”
In the UK, the government’s publication of
the Energy White Paper is eagerly awaited, as is its response to the
consultation on the future of UK carbon pricing. Expectations are that a new
carbon pricing scheme should be in place by 2021. Meanwhile, the Committee on
Climate Change launched a new call for Evidence in December 2019, to inform its
advice on the sixth carbon budget due to be published in September 2020. The
sixth carbon budget will set out a pathway to meet the UK’s net zero emissions
target in 2050.
The data comes from ECIU’s Net Zero online tracker. The figure represents a tripling of global net zero ambition in the eight months since ECIU launched its tracker. Nick Fedson, Sustainability Analyst at Alfa Energy added:
“When ECIU did this same analysis last year, they found that the proportion was at around one-sixth. It’s important to note that the UK wasn’t the only reason 2050 national net zero targets took off. The IPCC introduced the idea in 2018. It’s fair to say the UK accelerated their adoption though by being the first G7 country to set one.”
Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit
Energy White Paper