SINGAPORE - The Singapore National Academy of Science has joined an unprecedented push within the Commonwealth for governments to do more to cut emissions down to net zero.
The scientific body and 21 other national academies and societies of science launched a consensus statement on Monday (March 12), urging leaders to look at current scientific evidence on climate change, and to take action now.
The consensus statement, which represents the views of tens of thousands of scientists, marks the first time Commonwealth nations have come together to urge their governments to take further action to push global emissions down to "net zero" this century.
The statement said the academies stand ready to give scientific advice on climate change.
This comes ahead of next month's Commonwealth summit in Britain, at which sustainability is a key theme to be discussed, with a particular focus on the resilience of developing nations that are vulnerable to climate change.
Under the 2015 Paris Agreement, Singapore has pledged to reduce its emissions intensity by 36 per cent from 2005 levels, come 2030. Emissions intensity is the amount of greenhouse gases emitted to achieve each dollar of gross domestic product.
Singapore has also pledged to stop any increase to its greenhouse gas emissions by around 2030.
But it is just the first step in a long journey, said Professor Andrew Wee, president of the Singapore National Academy of Science.
"Even if all the country commitments from the Paris Agreement are met, the latest data shows that by the end of the century the global climate is likely to be 3 deg C above pre-industrial levels, Prof Wee said.
"This is substantially higher than the Paris target to limit warming to less than 2 deg C, and would have profound impacts affecting billions of people throughout the world."
He noted that the approaches of each nation will not be the same.
"But, they must be informed by the best available scientific evidence, monitoring and evaluation," Prof Wee said.