Planet Earth is close to reaching the temperature limit established in the Paris Agreement in 2015. It is about the dreaded 1.5 degrees Celsius that would cause a destabilization of the climate system which in turn would generate more heat, rising sea levels, more diseases, more extreme natural phenomena and many other events that pose a risk to humanity.
Recent studies indicate that Earth’s current average temperature ranges between 1.1 and 1.2 degrees compared to pre-industrial levels. This means that global warming could soon reach a point of no return.
“If we continue with the current emissions pattern possibly between 2030 and 2040 we would already be reaching 1.5 degrees”, Predicted the executive director of the Guakía Ambiente organization, Michela Izzo, during a meeting in Listín Diario.
Izzo was accompanied by María Eugenia Morales, Environment Officer of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP); María Alicia Urbaneja, executive director of the National Business Support Network for Environmental Protection (Ecored); and Stephany Morillo, from the Federation of Peasants Towards Progress of Bonao, Monsignor Nouel province.
Recently at the United Nations conference on climate change (COP26), held in Glasgow, Scotland, an agreement was reached that establishes the lines to be followed in the global sphere to contain the increase in temperature, however, each country of In particular, it is committed to taking steps to contribute to this goal.
Izzo explained that Despite all the agreements that have been made so far, greenhouse gas emissions continue to grow linearly. At the same time, he indicated that although a joint effort is required to achieve the goal, each country has the responsibility to contribute individually.
Although the Dominican Republic’s contribution to global warming is minimal (less than 1%), with small actions, coupled with those of other countries, it can help mitigate climate change.
One of them is the replacement of electric heaters with heating systems that run on solar energyIzzo explained. Izzo wondered why, if in various parts of the country, such as Santo Domingo, there is a lot of solar potential, electric heaters continue to be installed.
“There are changes that are structural and take time, but there are others that are simple and one does not understand why they have not yet been carried out,” he said. He indicated that to do this it would only be necessary to establish a municipal regulation that would force solar heaters to be installed on the roof in new constructions.
“We have the problem of cooling the rooms and by installing electric heaters we are converting a noble form of energy into heat,” he explained. Izzo considered that measures like this do not require a large investment or substantial changes, but simply that a decision be made and applied.
A larger measure, but more complex, is to reduce dependence on fossil fuels in the energy sector, considered one of the most polluting. Izzo said that the Dominican Republic’s energy matrix depends on fossil fuels for more than 70%.
The gases will remain
The UNDP Environment Officer, María Eugenia Morales, emphasized the urgency to reduce emissions now because even if humanity managed to stop emitting greenhouse gases, those that are in the atmosphere can remain there for up to thousands of years and will continue to have effects on the climate.
“The climate change scenarios present us with a more complex future than the one we have today. You have to be prepared. It is necessary to add in this preparation that risk that is going to increase or that is growing ”, he suggested.
The executive director of the National Business Support Network for Environmental Protection (Ecored), María Alicia Urbaneja, highlighted that in the country there has been considerable progress in the transformation of the energy matrix and that the business sector today is more aware of climate change.
However, he considered that it is necessary to create public policies on adaptation, educate consumers and encourage companies to take preventive actions.