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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The UN is out with its latest analysis of the gap between global emissions trends and "least-cost pathways" to meet the Paris climate deal's ambitious temperature-limiting goals.

Why it matters: The gap remains very large, despite the emissions cuts (occurring for tragic reasons) due to the pandemic curtailing so much activity and travel.

The big picture: "[T]he world is still heading for a temperature rise in excess of 3°C this century — far beyond the Paris Agreement goals of limiting global warming to well below 2°C and pursuing 1.5°C," a summary notes.

  • "However, a green pandemic recovery can cut around 25 percent off the greenhouse emissions predicted in 2030 and put the world close to the 2°C pathway."
  • Carbon Brief has a detailed and graphics-rich look at the report here.

The intrigue: The Washington Post explores one of the report's economic dimensions...

  • "The world’s wealthy will need to reduce their carbon footprints by a factor of 30 to help put the planet on a path to curb the ever-worsening impacts of climate change."
  • "Currently, the emissions attributable to the richest 1 percent of the global population account for more than double those of the poorest 50 percent."

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 20, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Biden's plan to upend Trump's environmental legacy

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden will on Wednesday order a government-wide review of over 100 Trump-era policies and direct agencies to prepare a suite of emissions and energy efficiency rules.

Why it matters: New information from transition officials offers the full scope of Biden's imminent, inauguration-day burst of environmental and energy policy moves.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 20, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Voters favor Biden's climate policies, but few view issue as top priority

Data: Morning Consult; Chart: Axios Visuals

Several new polls help to show where the public's at on energy and climate as Biden takes office.

Why it matters: People tend to favor emissions-cutting and low-carbon energy initiatives, but it's hardly top of mind.

Kaine, Collins' censure resolution seeks to bar Trump from holding office again

Sen. Tim Kaine (center) and Sen. Susan Collins (right). Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool via Getty Images

Sens. Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) are forging ahead with a draft proposal to censure former President Trump, and are considering introducing the resolution on the Senate floor next week.

Why it matters: Senators are looking for a way to condemn Trump on the record as it becomes increasingly unlikely Democrats will obtain the 17 Republican votes needed to gain a conviction, Axios Alayna Treene writes. "I think it’s important for the Senate's leadership to understand that there are alternatives," Kaine told CNN on Wednesday.