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We're not on track to meet Paris Climate Accord goal

wind turbine
Courtesy Consumers Energy
The world will need vast amounts of this to control global warming.

Researcher Markus Hagemann says even he was surprised by the radical degree of change that will be required in energy use in order to limit global warming to a 2 degree Celsius increase.

Hagemann is with NewClimate Institute, a partner with Climate Action Tracker.

The group's research shows that gas and diesel-burning cars and trucks would have to get about 100 miles to the gallon by 2030, and the entire fleet will need to be at least 50% electric by 2050.

Keeping the planet to the 1.5 Celsius goal of the Paris Climate Accord will require more radical shifts.  Scientists believe meeting this goal could avoid some of the more catastrophic effects of climate change.

Nearly all vehicles will have to be electrified by 2035, and electricity will have to come from mostly renewable sources.

Hageman says the Paris Accord shows that the world is at least on the right path, but we will will have to drastically speed up the pace of de-carbonization if we hope to slow global warming.

In the U.S., less than 1% of cars sold so far this year have been electrics.

In Michigan, only about 11% of electricity comes from renewable sources.

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Public. She began her career at Michigan Public as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
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