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Overshoot Governments: Room to Improve

The following governments have not yet committed to at least 50% emissions reductions by 2030, as compared to the pathways in the SR1.5 by Climate Analytics in recent analysis.  The SR1.5 determined that 50% reductions are needed by 2030 in order to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.  These SR1.5 pathways are based on 2010 emissions, and include all sectors and emissions impacting the global climate, both CO2 and non-CO2; so the figures shown here may be slightly different than those in official government publications or UNFCCC submissions.


If these countries and others do not bring their emissions in line with the SR1.5 — meaning around 50% reductions by 2030, in order to reach carbon neutrality by mid-century — we will overshoot the 1.5°C and 2°C temperature limits.  Depending on the degree of overshoot, we will then trigger some, or many of the outlined irreversible global impacts from cryosphere.  Overshoot is not yet inevitable however; if these and other governments revise their national emissions reductions plans to align with the SR1.5 by COP-26 on Glasgow, overshoot can be avoided or greatly minimized.  The choice is theirs, and ours.


"In September 2019, the French government updated its 2050 emissions target from a 75% reduction below 1990 levels to reaching net zero, placing it within France’s 1.5°C compatible range (Beta, 2019). However, the current 2030 target of a 40% reduction below 1990 levels fails to match this ambition level, instead sitting toward the upper bound of its 2°C range.


A 1.5°C compatible 2030 domestic target for France would entail a 52-66% reduction below 1990 levels."


France current policies and targets vs. temperature ranges

Source: Climate Analytics 


The Energy Policy of Poland 2040 describes a 2030 target of reducing CO2 emissions by 30% below 1990 levels (Polish Ministry of Energy, 2018). For the purpose of comparison, it is assumed that this 30% target will also apply to all other GHG emissions. Government emission projections to 2030 show that Poland is not on track to meet this modest target (Government of Poland, 2019).

An upgraded domestic reduction target of 51-69% below 1990 levels (excluding land use, land use change and forestry emissions), would be needed to ensure Poland is on a 1.5°C compatible trajectory.


Poland current policies and targets vs. temperature ranges

Source: Climate Analytics 

United States of America

"After officially rejoining the Paris Agreement, the Biden administration is now preparing a new 2030 Paris Agreement target – or Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) that is expected to be announced in time for the Leader’s Climate Summit on Earth Day (22 April).

The CAT’s analysis indicates that the new US NDC should aim to reduce its national emissions by at least 57-63% below 2005 levels by 2030 (incl. LULUCF) and provide support to other countries in order to be consistent with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C limit."


Source: Climate Analytics 

The CAT analysis looks at President Biden’s plans for three sectors and compares them with benchmarks defined in its benchmarks report:

  • Decarbonising the US power sector by 2035 is consistent with a Paris Agreement pathway;

  • For the transport sector, the largest source of emissions in the US, there is still a long way to go. While President Biden has begun the process toward clean passenger vehicles, he has set no targets nor timelines. The CAT analysis shows that to be compatible with the Paris Agreement 1.5 ̊C temperature limit, 95%-100% of sales of new light-duty vehicles in the US should be zero-emissions at national level by 2030. Progress has been made in states (such as California) and by automakers, but needs to be taken nationwide;

  • For the buildings sector, President Biden plans to reduce the carbon footprint of the US buildings sector by 50% by 2035. However, to be Paris Agreement compatible, the CAT analysis indicates that by 2030, emissions in the US buildings sector should be around 60% lower in residential buildings, and 70% lower in commercial buildings (from 2015 levels

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