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Worsening climate shocks risk distracting from efforts to reduce carbon emissions, creating ‘doom loop’

“The world is entering a more difficult stage of the climate and ecological crisis where its symptoms are drawing attention away from efforts to tackle its root causes, according to a new report published by the IPPR and Chatham House think tanks. Huge resources are being deployed to respond to the growing number of climate disasters and complex crises linked to environmental destruction. But such demands could come at the cost of diverting effort away from the rapid switch now needed to decarbonise the global economy. The report argues that this risks creating a vicious circle, or ‘doom loop’: the impacts of the climate and nature crises draw focus and resources away from tackling their underlying causes and the urgent steps needed to address them. The report explores how this dynamic can be seen in the disagreement over how best to inspire the faster changes now needed to reach the internationally agreed 1.5C target for maximum global temperature rises. Some argue that declaring the target to be still in reach remains the most powerful motivator, but others believe that breaching the limit could be the ‘wake-up call’ that would spur activists and policymakers to step up their efforts. But both stances can be exploited by ‘climate delayers’ who don’t want to see rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and wish to block transformational change. Instead, these delayers recommend potentially dangerous and untested technologies, such as injecting reflective particles into the stratosphere to lower heating by the sun, or finding ways to remove carbon from the atmosphere on an implausible scale. Both could be used to justify continued fossil emissions…”

Source: 1.5°C – dead or alive? The risks to transformational change from reaching and breaching the Paris Agreement goal

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