Cooling Revolution: 60 nations, including US, pledge emission slash by 2050

28th edition of COP Summit
28th edition of COP Summit

United States: On Tuesday, approximately 60 nations, including the United States, committed to endorsing measures to mitigate cooling-related emissions by the year 2050 at the COP28 summit in Dubai. This affirmation was validated by officials from the US State Department.

Per reports from the news agency Reuters, the Global Cooling Pledge represents an unprecedented collective initiative targeting energy emissions stemming from the cooling sector. The commitment is specifically focused on reducing cooling-related emissions by a minimum of 68 percent compared to 2022 levels.

Renowned experts have characterized this endeavor as formidable, foreseeing that the cooling industry may inadvertently contribute to escalating temperatures.

According to a publication by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), there is a projected threefold increase in cooling capacity by 2050. Consequently, cooling emissions are expected to range between 4.4 billion and 6.1 billion metric tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2050. This staggering figure, as outlined in the report, equates to one-tenth of global emissions, exerting strain on electric grids.

US Vice President Kamala Harris representing US at COP 28 | Credits: AP

Prospective regulations and incentives for the industry in the United States are on the horizon.

As indicated by reports from Reuters, there is an anticipation that this initiative may prompt the formulation of additional regulations and incentives within the industry. Moreover, the participation of the United States is expected to exert pressure on other nations to join this collective effort.

Initiatives by the US to enhance the efficiency of cooling technology

An unnamed US official recently conveyed the United States’ concerted efforts to mitigate the impacts on the efficiency of cooling technologies.

Authorities have also committed to reducing the utilization of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a gas emitted by air conditioners and refrigerators that constitutes a significant greenhouse gas. To this end, the US Environmental Protection Agency in October, introduced a set of regulations slated to restrict the use of this gas from 2025 to 2028.

Other nations endorsing the Global Cooling Pledge

According to reports from Reuters, Brian Dean of Sustainable Energy for All—a component of the UNEP coalition that crafted the pledge—revealed that Kenya was the inaugural nation to endorse the Global Cooling Pledge on Monday afternoon.

Organizers envisioned garnering support from a minimum of 80 countries, underscoring the critical importance of addressing climate-warming emissions to shield nations from perilous and life-threatening heatwaves.

Another commitment during COP28

A separate pledge during COP28 concentrated on tripling renewable energy, ensuring a doubling of energy efficiency rates by 2030. This commitment garnered support from approximately 118 countries.

It is posited that these commitments are comparatively less intricate and more feasible to implement than the comprehensive Global Cooling Pledge.