IPCC Synthesis Report - PwC Sustainability & Climate Change comment

Published at 13:37 PM on 02 November 2014

Commenting on the publication of the IPCC Synthesis report, Jonathan Grant, director, PwC, and a specialist in carbon emissions and international climate policy said:

“The message is as familiar as it is clear. The climate change debate is over, we can and need to act.”

"The reality of the findings doesn’t change what many in the public and private sector battle with despite the evidence. Decarbonising energy intensive sectors, the main building blocks of our economy, is our biggest challenge. The IPCC is right to endorse the solutions as affordable, and possible, but it doesn’t get away from the fact that many of the right business and policy decisions have been caught between the potential for large near term costs of mitigation or extremely large costs of climate impacts in the longer term. The IPCC is basically saying either pay now for 2 degrees, or pay more later, in a potentially even warmer world. The finance, incentives and frameworks that enable those choices to be made is the job for Paris.”

PwC analysis modelling carbon emissions and GDP growth rates in the G20 shows that to achieve a 2C limit to global warming, the global energy system would need to be virtually zero carbon by 2100, using renewables, nuclear, or fossil fuels with carbon capture and storage. The global economy now needs to reduce the rate of carbon emitted linked to energy usage, at 6.2% a year - five times faster than current rates (1%), every year from now till 2100. On our current burn rate the entire carbon budget set by the IPCC would be used by 2034, 66 years ahead of schedule. This trajectory, based on IPCC data, takes us to four degrees of warming by the end of the century. For more information see Two Degrees of Separation - The PwC Low Carbon Economy Index.

For more information or comment, please contact:
Rowena Mearley,  PwC Media Relations
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PwC’s sustainability & climate change team includes over 100 UK based specialists in climate science, policy, energy & renewables, climate & business strategy and carbon trading, and 800 globally.


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