Closing the emissions gap between Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and the global emissions levels needed to achieve the Paris Agreement’s climate goals will require a comprehensive package of policy measures. National and sectoral policies can help fill the gap, but success stories in one country cannot be automatically replicated in other countries. They need to be adapted to the local context. Here, we develop a new Bridge scenario based on nationally relevant, short-term measures informed by interactions with country experts.
These good practice policies are rolled out globally between now and 2030 and combined with carbon pricing thereafter. We implement this scenario with an ensemble of global integrated assessment models. We show that the Bridge scenario closes two-thirds of the emissions gap between NDC and 2 °C scenarios by 2030 and enables a pathway in line with the 2 °C goal when combined with the necessary long-term changes, i.e. more comprehensive pricing measures after 2030. The Bridge scenario leads to a scale-up of renewable energy (reaching 52%-88% of global electricity supply by 2050), electrification of end-uses, efficiency improvements in energy demand sectors, and enhanced afforestation and reforestation. Our analysis suggests that early action via good-practice policies is less costly than a delay in global climate cooperation.