Current News



Here's how 6 countries are stepping up to meet the Paris climate goals

Julia Rosen, Los Angeles Times on

Published in News & Features

World leaders are gathering in New York for Monday's Climate Action Summit. The summit's goal, according to United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, is to encourage countries to get serious about climate change.

"Don't come with a speech," Guterres has warned. "Come with a plan."

So far, international efforts have fallen short. Four years after the Paris climate accord was inked, countries' promises to reduce greenhouse gas emissions remain too weak to meet the agreement's goal of limiting global warming to "well below" 2 degrees Celsius. By the end of the century, temperatures are expected to rise by 3.2 degrees compared to preindustrial times if current policies aren't strengthened, according to a new estimate from the Climate Action Tracker.

But that doesn't mean countries haven't made any progress. A handful of nations have managed to drive down their emissions -- and some have made great strides in specific areas.

Now, experts say, it's time for everyone to up their game when they submit their next round of climate commitments in 2020. (You can follow the latest Paris pledges at the World Resources Institute's Climate Watch.)

As the summit kicks off, here's a look at six countries that have already taken meaningful action on climate change, and how they did it.



India ranks second in the world in population and third in greenhouse gas emissions (fourth if you count the European Union as a single country). But it is also at the top of two other lists: it is one of the few countries on track to fulfill its climate pledge under the Paris agreement, and one of fewer still whose commitment is consistent with holding warming to 2 degrees C.

Much of India's success is due to its enthusiastic embrace of solar energy.

In 2010, the country established the National Solar Mission, which set out to add 20 gigawatts of solar capacity by 2022. The country surpassed that goal back in 2018 and is now set to exceed its Paris pledge to supply 40% of the nation's energy needs with non-fossil-fuel power by 2030.


swipe to next page


blog comments powered by Disqus