Millions are on the verge of starvation due to a multiyear drought in the Horn of Africa. Damages and economic losses caused by the floods in Pakistan exceeded USD 30 billion. In the northern hemisphere, intense summer heat caused destructive and deadly wildfires.
Climate change is inextricably linked to these occurrences. At only 1.1°C above pre-industrial temperatures, we observe them. And we will not remain at 1.1°C for long. According to last week's UNEP Emissions Gap Report, current policies will lead to a 2,8°C temperature increase by the end of the century.
We must strive for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible. However, people, ecosystems, and economies have already begun to suffer. And it will be decades before temperatures begin to decline again if we are successful in reducing emissions. Consequently, we must increase our efforts to adapt to climate change immediately.
The UNEP Adaptation Gap Report 2022, which we are releasing today, indicates that adaptation efforts are not keeping up with climate risks and impacts. Yes, over 80% of nations have at least one national adaptation planning tool in place. Yes, these instruments give disadvantaged groups such as women and indigenous peoples a higher priority.