One of the key findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Synthesis Report is that there are solutions available right now, across all sectors of the economy, that could at least halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
“The problem is getting worse,” explains Greg Nemet, a Canadian renewable policy expert and IPCC author. “But we’ve got solutions now that are so much more affordable than they were.”
After studying advances in solar technology, which has seen rapid expansion and price reductions, he’s optimistic about our capacity to avert the worst possible climate outcomes.
In this week’s episode of our climate podcast Fear and Wonder, we speak to Greg about the pace of change in the solar industry and whether it can be replicated for other technologies.
We also hear from fellow IPCC author and Algerian energy policy expert Yamina Saheb, about the emission reductions that are possible by adopting age-old sustainability concepts. She explains the idea of “sufficiency”, which aims to reduce the overall demand for energy, materials, land and water, while still delivering human wellbeing for all.
Finally, we ask Greg and Yamina about carbon dioxide removal, one of the most controversial technologies assessed by the IPCC. Is it the silver bullet solution we’ve all been waiting for, or should we be supporting the policy and technology options that are here with us now?
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Fear and Wonder is sponsored by the Climate Council, an independent, evidence-based organisation working on climate science, impacts and solutions.
Dr Joelle Gergis has received funding from the Australian Research Council and the Australian Government's Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources in the past. She currently receives funding from the Australian National University.
Michael Green does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.