July 23, 2024

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Bill Gates warns the world is likely to overshoot 2 degrees of warming

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Bill Gates arrives for a press conference to launch the Global Polio Eradication Initiative at the European Commission’s Berlaymont headquarters in Brussels on October 11, 2023.

Simon Wohlfahrt | Afp | Getty Images

Dubai, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES — Billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates on Friday said the world is likely to overshoot a critical temperature threshold that scientists have long warned could bring dangerous and potentially irreversible impacts on people, wildlife and ecosystems.

Speaking to CNBC’s Tania Bryer in the United Arab Emirates at the COP28 climate conference, Gates said he was “definitely glass half-full” when it comes to the climate crisis and that he was optimistic the Dubai summit could help to drive progress.

However, the Microsoft co-founder said any headway in the climate fight would likely not be enough to prevent 2 degrees Celsius of global warming.

His comments come as policymakers and business leaders convene in Dubai for the United Nations’ biggest and most important annual climate summit. It is widely regarded as a pivotal opportunity to accelerate climate action at a time when the world is on track to record its hottest year on record and as extreme weather events take their toll across the globe.

“There is not some binary cut-off where at a certain temperature everything is horrible,” Gates said on Friday.

“We are going to have warming, likely above our goals and that’s where adaptation comes in to say ‘OK, because of this warming what can you do that is very inexpensive, like better warning systems for bad weather events or better weather data to help farmers know when to plant’.”

Gates said it would be imperative to help the poorest adapt to human-induced climate change and to try to minimize damage to ecosystems, such as coral reefs.

“Fortunately, we’ve made enough progress that we’re not going to have the extreme cases like of 4 degrees [Celsius] warming, but we’ll sadly probably even miss the 2-degree goal. So, we’ll have adaptation…

2023-12-01 03:57:00

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