The United Nations is unable to offer any words of comfort on the global climate emergency in its annual emissions-gap report. The U.N. Environment Program on Tuesday published its regular snapshot of how the world is doing in cutting levels of climate-damaging pollutants, but has said years have been wasted by countries failing to take urgent action. “The summary findings are bleak,” the report bluntly states. “Countries collectively failed to stop the growth in global greenhouse-gas emissions, meaning that deeper and faster cuts are now required.” Even if all current promises are kept, temperatures are set to rise as much as 3.9 degrees Celsius (7 degrees Fahrenheit) by 2100. Fifteen of the 20 wealthiest countries have no timeline for a net zero target. “Our collective failure to act early and hard on climate change means we now must deliver deep cuts to emissions—over 7 percent each year, if we break it down evenly over the next decade,” said Environment Program Executive Director Inger Andersen.
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