The Production Gap

2020 Special Report

To limit warming to 1.5°C or well below 2°C, as required by the 2015 Paris Agreement, the world needs to wind down fossil fuel production. Instead, governments continue to plan to produce coal, oil, and gas far in excess of the levels consistent with the Paris Agreement temperature limits.

December 2, 2020
  • NEW #ProductionGap report shows that to keep warming below 1.5°C, global production needs to decline annually by 11% for coal 4% for oil 3% for gas Instead, governments are planning increases of 2% per year.

  • NEW #ProductionGap report shows that the world is at a turning point... Governments can stick to plans that increase fossil fuel production and lock in catastrophic warming. Or they can use the #COVID19 recovery to #buildbackbetter

  • BREAKING: The world must decrease fossil fuel production by 6% per year to limit catastrophic warming. Instead, countries are planning increases. Policymakers must act now to close this dangerous #ProductionGap

This report highlights the discrepancy between countries’ planned fossil fuel production levels and the global levels necessary to limit warming to 1.5°C or 2°C. This gap is large, with countries aiming to produce 120% more fossil fuels by 2030 than would be consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C.

The COVID-19 pandemic and associated response measures have introduced new uncertainties to the production gap. While global fossil fuel production will decline sharply this year, government stimulus and recovery measures will shape our climate future: they could prompt a return to pre-COVID production trajectories that lock in severe climate disruption, or they could set the stage for a managed wind-down of fossil fuels as part of a “build back better” effort.

This special issue of the Production Gap Report looks at how conditions have changed since last year, what this means for the production gap, and how governments can set the stage for a long-term, just, and equitable transition away from fossil fuels.

Report details

Climate Change Mitigation
COVID-19 and Resilient Recovery
Focus area