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Global Warming of 6 Degrees Probable

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16:0024 December 2012

Hope is the last to die; the two-degree target can still be achieved. Unfortunately, it's no longer likely, as a study done by PricewaterhouseCoopers AG in Frankfurt shows. PwC does an annual study on how the CO2 emissions of the G20 countries are developing compared to their economic growth. The authors of the study come to the conclusion that CO2 emissions in the G20 countries increased by an average of 3% between 2010 and 2011, while the economy grew by 3.7%. Although this is a small improvement over the study done in the previous year, which showed that emissions were increasing faster than the economy was growing, but it is still far from enough.

If the current trend continues, then according to ewc it is safe to assume that Earth's temperature will increase by 6 °C during the course of this century. In order to achieve the 2-degree goal, CO2 emissions would have to be reduced by 5.1% for every 1% of economic growth per year - a figure that has never been achieved over the last 50 years.

The development in the individual countries varies widely. Emissions have also declined in all G7 countries, while they are strongly increasing in emerging markets at the moment. China could probably be described as the most important factor here, where emissions in 2011 increased by 9.4%.

As long as climate politics remains "business as usual", the authors advise companies and the public sector to intensify preparations for climate change. "When it comes to long-term investments, for example in infrastructure, pessimistic climate scenarios need to play a bigger role when planning, especially in coastal areas or low-lying regions," explains pwc.

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