Real Cost of Net Zero Carbon Could Be Mass Hunger
Governments and companies are happy to make net zero carbon pledges. Their real cost could be ruinous for the poor.
Plans for removing carbon from the atmosphere, if they proved workable, could exact a lethal price from those least able to afford it: starvation for the world’s poorest people. Anti-poverty campaigners say implementing some net zero carbon schemes could devastate the prospects for global agriculture.
A report by Oxfam International, the global campaign to end poverty, says one of the favoured schemes, planting trees, is totally unrealistic, as it would require 1.6 billion hectares of new forests, an area five times the size of India, and greater than all the existing farmland on the planet.
To prevent irreversible damage to the climate and limit temperature rise to the internationally agreed target of 1.5°C above historic levels, governments need to be on track by 2030 to cut carbon emissions by 45 per cent from their 2010 levels, according to the UNFCCC, the United Nations climate change convention.
Photo courtesy of Ajaykhadka.