Five Ways to Warmer Worlds
How will the climate develop by the end of the century? Previous projections are based on different, sometimes controversial assumptions about greenhouse gas emissions. A new set of models is intended to close gaps - in the form of narratives.
When world leaders met in 2050, they looked back on the Corona pandemic 30 years earlier as a turning point - also for global warming. By defeating the disease together, nations ushered in a new era of working together that also prevented a climate catastrophe. With investments in regenerative energies and new technologies, they reduced carbon dioxide emissions and thus laid a good basis for actually limiting global warming to around 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century.
Or not. Alternatively, the 2050 pandemic may have been just a brief episode in a long and ultimately futile attempt to stem climate change. After an initial, pandemic-related drop in emissions in 2020, post-crisis countries turned to cheap fossil fuels to restart their economies. The CO2 values in the atmosphere increased dramatically - and with them the temperatures. That put the world on track for an extra five degrees by 2100.
These are just two possible developments for the future. Although no one knows what will happen, climate scientists still need to anticipate the problems that different conceivable levels of global warming could cause. So they came up with a series of scenarios. …