Experts call for framework similar to Montreal Protocol to reduce Methane

Experts call for framework similar to Montreal Protocol to reduce Methane
Experts call for framework similar to Montreal Protocol to reduce Methane

Durwood Zaelke, a major specialist on short-lived climate pollutants like methane and black carbon, has urged for a Montreal Protocol-style agreement for methane, calling it the single most effective approach to prevent the global rise in temperatures.

Experts call for framework similar to Montreal Protocol to reduce Methane

Zaelke, the founder and president of the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development in Washington, has been working on solutions that might have an immediate influence on the continuously rising temperatures. Zaelke said the vow made last year in Glasgow to limit methane emissions has the potential to save roughly 0.2 degree Celsius of global warming by 2050.

“This is a really encouraging commitment.” If it is delivered, we will be able to prevent around 0.2 degrees Celsius of global warming. In reality, we have more options. According to a new UN Environment Programme research, methane emissions may be cut by 45 percent by the 2040s. This might result in a 0.3 degree Celsius reduction in warming. Our goal should clearly be to avoid warming by 0.3 degrees Celsius, but the global pledge in Glasgow is a great start,” Zaelke said.

A group of approximately 100 nations signed on to a voluntary promise in Glasgow to reduce methane emissions by at least 30% from the baseline level of 2020 by 2030. Despite the fact that it was not included in the formal conclusions, this vow is seen as one of the most significant results of Glasgow, given the necessity of lowering methane emissions.

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Methane, often known as CH4, is the second most frequent of the six primary greenhouse gases after carbon dioxide, accounting for approximately 17% of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. Methane has a shorter lifetime in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide, which stays in the atmosphere for 100 years or more, but it has a substantially larger global warming potential, around 80 times that of carbon dioxide. Methane emissions are responsible for at least 30% of the temperature rise since the industrial revolution.

“It has a lot of power.” But if we lower it rapidly, and we can, we also stand to gain much more. “My advice has been — and I have spoken with many nations, negotiators, and others — that the Montreal Protocol be utilised as an inspiration for a worldwide methane accord,” Zaelke said, referring to the 1988 international deal to reduce ozone-depleting gases.

The inclusion of HFCs in the Montreal Protocol has put them on a considerably faster path to extinction. This action is expected to prevent 0.5 degree Celsius of warming by the end of the century.

One of the co-authors of the paper that estimated the avoidance potential of HFCs, Zaelke, stated that a methane reduction should also be prioritized. However, it cannot be included in the Montreal Protocol because, unlike HFCs, it does not deplete the ozone layer. The Montreal Protocol only applies to ozone-depleting substances.

“The Montreal Protocol’s essential frameworks can be inherited, but the governance approach must be adapted to address the three major sources of methane emissions independently.” “The first has to be methane emissions from mining and fossil fuel production,” Zaelke added.

Akshat Ayush

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