"Net zero" refers to the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to the lowest possible level. Achieving net zero is seen as a crucial step in mitigating the impacts of climate change and keeping global temperature rise below 1.5°C.
To keep global warming below 1.5°C, as called for in the Paris Agreement, carbon emissions need to be reduced by around 45% by 2030 and net zero by 2050.
The path towards a world with zero net emissions necessitates a complete transformation of our production, consumption, and transportation systems. The energy sector, responsible for around three quarters of current greenhouse gas emissions, holds the key to averting the worst impacts of climate change. Replacing polluting sources such as coal, oil, and gas power generation with renewable alternatives like solar and wind power would result in a substantial decrease in carbon emissions.
Additionally, improving energy efficiency, adopting sustainable practices in industries, promoting electric vehicles, and investing in carbon capture and storage technologies are some of the approaches to achieving net zero.
There is indeed a global effort to achieve net zero emissions. Many countries, cities, industries, and institutions have committed to this goal. Over 70 countries, including major emitters like China, the United States, and the European Union, have set targets for reaching net zero emissions. Collectively, these commitments cover approximately 76% of global emissions, indicating a widespread recognition of the urgency to address climate change.