On Monday, 20 March 2023, the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Report that summarises 8 years of climate science. Luxembourg was represented at the IPCC by Dr. Andrew Ferrone, chef du service de la météorologie de l'Administration des services techniques de l'agriculture (ASTA), and his colleague, Dana Lang, chargée d'études.
The IPCC finds that the world is on a dangerous path of global warming and that every increment of global warming will intensify multiple and concurrent hazards. The report states "there is a rapidly closing window of opportunity to limit global warming to 1.5°C to ensure a liveable and sustainable future for all.”
Antonio Guterres, Secretary General of the United Nations, described the report as a "practical guide to defusing the climate time bomb.” While the report sounds the alarm bells, the scientists were keen to emphasize that we must not give up hope: "Multiple opportunities to limit global warming to 1.5°C exist but need to be scaled-up urgently.”
The scientists' message is timely, as the government of Luxembourg and those of other EU member states are currently updating their National Energy and Climate Plans. Luxembourg's NECP will set out how Luxembourg will reduce its emissions by 55% compared to 2005 levels by 2040. The NECP is developed in close consultation with stakeholders and will be accompanied by a public consultation. It is also inspired by measures elaborated last year by the Klimabiergerrot and the Observatoire de la politique climatique. The Ministry of Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development is working across all levels of government and with industry, businesses, and residents to reduce our emissions and put Luxembourg on the path to net zero.
At the international level, Luxembourg supports climate projects in a range of developing and vulnerable countries. In Egypt at the COP27, Luxembourg joined other countries as part of the High Ambition Coalition in calling for more ambition in the Mitigation Work Program to keep 1.5°C alive.
Main messages of the IPCC AR6 Synthesis Report:
- There is a rapidly closing window of opportunity to limit global warming to 1.5°C to ensure a liveable and sustainable future for all.
- Human-induced climate change is a threat to human well-being and planetary health. Every increment of global warming will intensify multiple and concurrent hazards.
- Climate change is causing adverse widespread and increasingly irreversible losses and damages to nature and human systems, which also makes it more and more difficult to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals SDGs for billions of people.
- There is a wide range of feasible and viable options for increased climate ambition, both for mitigation and for adaptation. Multiple opportunities to limit global warming to 1.5°C exist but need to be scaled-up urgently.
- The decisions and actions we take now and during this decade will have intergenerational impacts over centuries and for thousands of years
Press release by the Ministry of the Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development