Net zero refers to the concept of balancing the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere with an equivalent amount of greenhouse gases removed from the atmosphere. The goal of achieving net zero is to stabilise the level of atmospheric greenhouse gases, which are a major contributor to climate change.
There are two main approaches to achieving net zero: reducing greenhouse gas emissions and removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. Reducing emissions involves taking steps to decrease the amount of greenhouse gases that are released into the atmosphere through activities such as burning fossil fuels, deforestation, and agriculture. This can be achieved through a variety of methods, including increasing energy efficiency, transitioning to renewable energy sources, and adopting sustainable land use practices.
Removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere involves actively removing carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases from the air and storing them in a way that prevents them from being released back into the atmosphere. This can be done through a variety of methods, including afforestation and reforestation, soil carbon sequestration, and carbon capture and storage technologies.
There is growing interest in achieving net zero at both the individual and societal levels. Many countries, cities, and companies have set net zero targets for themselves, with the goal of achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by a certain date. The United Nations has also set a global target of achieving net zero emissions by 2050 in order to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
Achieving net zero is a complex and challenging task that will require significant changes to the way we produce and consume energy, as well as the way we use land. However, it is also an important and necessary goal if we are to effectively address the threat of climate change and protect the planet for future generations.