Governments and organisations around the world are addressing climate change with investments in lower carbon and renewable energy solutions, emission trading schemes, and unprecedented commitments to energy efficiency. In a world with growing energy demand, there is an increased focus on continuing to supply cheap and reliable energy while also working to reduce the impact on the climate.
In their 2013 report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), an expert panel of scientists from around the world, estimated approximately 1 trillion tonnes of carbon released into the atmosphere is the amount that would effect a 2 degree rise in temperature.
From 1870 to 2013, they estimate 565 Gtc (gigatones of carbon) have been released, just over half of that 1 trillion GtC budget.
Current annual global emissions are approaching 10 GtC. While emissions growth rates are slowing in many parts of the world, the remaining 435 GtC budget will be spent around 2060.
Given annual emissions are estimated to continue to rise, a temperature rise of 2 degrees is likely prior to 2060.
When accounting for additional CO2 greenhouse gas emissions (like methane), the temperature rise is further accelerated.