July 20, 2024

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New climate coalition urges stronger targets as ‘greenlash’ fears mount

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Governments are being urged to set ambitious climate plans by a group including Ikea and Unilever as concerns rise that politicians are weakening measures to tackle global warming amid a growing “greenlash”.

A coalition of businesses, mayors, governors and investors calling themselves Mission 2025 has formed in support of robust climate action and is backed by former UN diplomat Christiana Figueres.

Figueres, who oversaw the UN’s climate change arm at the time of the landmark 2015 Paris agreement to tackle rising global temperatures, told the Financial Times that Mission 2025 aimed to rebut the view that moving faster on tackling the climate crisis was “too difficult, too unpopular or too expensive”.

Several companies have in recent months rolled back on net zero and other environmental measures, with some critics arguing that businesses are responding to mixed messages from governments.

In December, governments agreed at the COP28 climate summit to transition from fossil fuel, but there are also signs that countries are slowing or rolling back on climate action.

Germany last year watered down a proposal on greener boilers after a backlash from homeowners, while the EU this year scrapped a target on agricultural emissions after protests from farmers.

Green politicians also suffered big election losses in Europe this month, leading to suggestions that voters are no longer as supportive of ambitious climate policies.

The Mission 2025 group is calling for governments to ensure that new national climate plans for the next decade — known as nationally determined contributions (NDCs) — are strong enough to limit global temperature rises to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels. Under the Paris agreement, countries have to submit fresh plans every five years, starting from 2020, with the next round due in 2025.

Last year, the UN said the world was on…

2024-06-23 19:01:41

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