Earth’s temperature is likely to jump nearly 6 degrees between now and the end of the century even if every country cuts greenhouse gas emissions as proposed, according to a United Nations update.
Scientists looked at emission plans from 192 nations and calculated what would happen to global warming. The projections take into account 80 percent pollution cuts from the U.S. and Europe by 2050, which are not sure things.
The U.S. figure is based on a bill that passed the House of Representatives but is running into resistance in the Senate, where debate has been delayed by health care reform efforts.
Carbon dioxide, mostly from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil, is the main cause of global warming, trapping the sun’s energy in the atmosphere. The world’s average temperature has already risen 1.4 degrees (0.8 degrees Celsius) since the 19th century.
Much of projected rise in temperature is because of developing nations, which aren’t talking much about cutting their emissions, scientists said at a United Nations press conference Thursday. China alone adds nearly 2 degrees (1 degree Celsius) to the projections.
“We are headed toward very serious changes in our planet,” said Achim Steiner, head of the U.N.’s environment program, which issued the update on Thursday.
Even if the developed world cuts its emissions by 80 percent and the developing world cuts theirs in half by 2050, as some experts propose, the world is still facing a 3-degree (1.7 degree Celsius) increase by the end of the century, said Robert Corell, a prominent U.S. climate scientist who helped oversee the update.
Corell said the most likely agreement out of the international climate negotiations in Copenhagen in December still translates into a nearly 5 degree (2.7 degree Celsius) increase in world temperature by the end of the century. European leaders and the Obama White House have set a goal to limit warming to just a couple degrees.
The U.N.’s environment program unveiled the update on peer-reviewed climate change science to tell diplomats how hot the planet is getting. The last big report from the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change came out more than two years ago and is based on science that is at least three to four years old, Steiner said.
Global warming is speeding up, especially in the Arctic, and that means that some top-level science projections from 2007 are already out of date and overly optimistic. Corell, who headed an assessment of warming in the Arctic, said global warming “is accelerating in ways that we are not anticipating.”
Plastic bubble brings joy to French nursing home
Nathalie Szczepaniak caresses the hand of her husband Joseph, a care home resident, as the couple reunites after weeks without a visit because of France's coronavirus lockdown.
But this is no ordinary reunion.
The couple meets in an anti-virus "bubble" at Joseph's nursing home in Bourbourg, northern France, separated by a clear plastic sheet that allows them some physical contact, face-to-face, without the risk of infection.
Nathalie holds up the couple's dog, a white fluffy creature named Valco, so that Joseph, who has Parkinson's disease, can press his palm to its paw through the plastic.
‘I’m entitled’: Kayleigh McEnany defends her 11 mail-in votes while calling it ‘fraud’ for the masses
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Thursday faced questions from Fox News about why she had voted by mail 11 times even though President Donald Trump has called absentee ballots a "scam."
McEnany was asked about her voting history after the Tampa Bay Times reported that she had used mail-in voting nearly a dozen times in recent years.
"So why is it OK for you to do it?" Fox News host Ed Henry asked McEnany. "I understand you are traveling, you're in a different city. But how can you really be assured that your votes were counted accurately but when other people do it, it's fraud."
American Airlines to cut 30% of management staff
American Airlines will cut 30 percent of its management and support staff in its latest belt-tightening move during the prolonged COVID-19 downturn, the company disclosed Thursday.
The big US carrier outlined a series of measures to reduce headcount throughout its operations in an email to staff that was released in a securities filing Thursday.
American currently has a team of 17,000 people in management and support, meaning the actions planned will cut about 5,100 jobs.
The move follows statements from United Airlines, Delta Air Lines and other carriers that have signaled deep job cuts due to sinking air travel demand from coronavirus shutdowns.