PATHWAYS FOR REDUCING EMISSIONS
Digital Art on Metal 36" W X 28.6”
This graph shows possible pathways to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to limit global mean temperature rise in the post-industrial era to not more than 2°C (3.6°F) which was the stated goal of the countries signing the Paris Agreement.* The graph demonstrates the critical importance of prompt and aggressive responses in order to avoid the need for more drastic mitigation measures in the future. The black curves reflect the fastest reduction scenarios, resulting in the least need for future negative emissions. The message is clear- the sooner we act, the greater the chance of reducing the negative impacts and costs of climate change.
Fourth National Climate Assessment, US Global Change Research Program, FAQs, Figure A5.23, nca.2018.globalchange.gov
*The October 2018 report of the UN sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change makes the case that keeping warming below 1.5°C will be necessary to avoid some of the most severe climate change impacts.