NAIROBI, Nov 3 (Swara) – Some 103 countries have formed a global partnership committed to cutting emissions of methane, a greenhouse gas, by 2030.

The Global Methane Pledge, signed on November 2 at the 26th Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate (COP26) in Glasgow, includes 15 major methane emitters, among them Brazil, Nigeria and Canada. The commitment was spearheaded by the United States, United Kingdom and the European Union. The Pledge aims to limit methane emissions by 30 per cent compared with 2020 levels.

Methane is a key ingredient in the formation of ground-level ozone (smog), a powerful climate change catalyst and dangerous air pollutant. It is emitted by human activities such as leakage from natural gas systems and the raising of livestock, as well as by natural sources such as wetlands.

A Global Methane Assessment released in May by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) shows that human-caused methane emissions can be reduced by up to 45 per cent this decade. Such reductions would avoid nearly 0.3°C of global warming by 2045 and would be consistent with keeping the goal of the Paris Agreement to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius (1.5˚C) within reach.

More than 35 world leaders also backed and signed up to the new Glasgow Breakthrough Agenda that will see countries and businesses work together to dramatically scale and speed up the development and deployment of clean technologies and drive down costs this decade. Signatories include the US, India, EU, developing economies and some of the countries most vulnerable to climate change – collectively representing more than 50 per cent of the world’s economy and every region.

The aim is to make clean technologies the most affordable, accessible and attractive choice for all globally in the most polluting sectors by 2030, particularly supporting the developing world to access the innovation and tools needed for a just transition to net zero.

Work will focus on five key sectors – power, road transport, hydrogen, steel and agriculture – which together represent more than half of total global emissions and further demonstrates how countries are moving from commitments to tangible action.