It is no news that we are in a situation of climate crisis right now. Temperatures are going wild in many places of the earth. Already since March a severe heat wave struck Pakistan and India, affecting hundreds of millions of people. In the Pakistani city of Nawabshah a high temperature of 49.5 °C was measured. In the meantime, people have to pay more and more worldwide to get food onto their tables, while “over 2 billion people live in water-stressed countries”. The Great Barrier Reef, giving home to a unique biotope and one of the natural wonders of the earth has recently suffered a mass bleaching event and will most probably be gone soon. The situation is not coincidental as it is a clear result of accelerated humanmade climate change.
A recent update from the World Meteorological Organisation puts this into perspective. It says that there is a “50:50 chance of global temperature temporarily reaching [the] 1.5°C threshold in [the] next five years”. According to the Paris Climate Agreement from 2015, the 1.5°C threshold contained severe but somewhat manageable consequences of anthropogenic climate change. Many countries of the world had ratified this agreement, and ostensibly made it their goal to curb emissions in an effort to avoid a collapse. But instead and despite the Covid-19-recession, global CO2-emissions have been at an all-time high in 2021. The trajectory shows far beyond 1.5°C.
While a temporary increase in global temperature by 1.5 °C does not qualify as a permanent temperature increase, it nevertheless represents a looming cornerstone towards mass extinctions and the threatening of the foundations upon which human existence depends upon. It seems like the chance to act had been forfeited.