The Initiative

The SOS Planet initiative is promoted by Fondazione Ambiente Milano and Amedeo Clavarino and will soon be established as “Fondazione SOS Planet” based in Switzerland.

Why was the SOS Planet initiative launched?

Introduction

To avoid catastrophic consequences for humanity due to climate change, in 2015 almost all the countries of the world signed the Paris Agreement by which they committed themselves to containing in the long term the increase in the global average temperature to 1.5°C (maximum 2°C) compared to pre-industrial levels.

These commitments have so far not been translated into action. The global average temperature has, in fact, already risen by 1.2°C compared to the pre-industrial era and, if the growth trend of the last decade (0.25°C) continues, in 2100 we will have average temperatures exceeding 3°C above the preindustrial level, which is more than double the objectives of the Paris Agreement.

The majority of the world leaders have today replaced this goal (1.5°C) with that of achieving net CO2 neutrality by 2050 which, if a few years ago seemed consistent with the goal of not exceeding 1.5°C relative to the pre-industrial average temperatures, is no longer so today. READ MORE

Our Goals

We are aware that anticipating the achievement of net CO2 neutrality by 2030 even for those countries representing only around 33% of global emissions (USA, Europe, Japan, South Korea and Canada) is an ambitious goal from technical, economic, and political points of view. Nevertheless, we believe it is worth communicating to citizens and politicians at the national, European, and global levels the scientific data and the climate risks arising in case we do not bring forward the target date for reaching net CO2 neutrality from 2050 to 2030 (at least for those countries responsible for 33% of the emissions) and do not speed up the process of decarbonization starting with small sacrifices on a personal level – Covid-19 has taught us a lot!

In light of the efforts to combat Covid 19 (far beyond those needed to become CO2 neutral by 2030), we want to prove that becoming net CO2 neutral by 2030 is an achievable goal. Above all, we want to prove that we can immediately do much more than what is currently being done – almost nothing – starting with the use of “carbon offsetting” as widely as possible both voluntarily and through the imposition of a carbon tax. READ MORE

Our Action Plan

First step – Gathering scientific evidence

Gathering scientific evidence to support the fact that, in order not to fall into irreversibility of climate change, we should become net CO2-eq neutral by 2030 and carbon negative after 2030 by reducing the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere down to the equivalent of circa 350 ppm of CO2 by 2100 Scientific Background

We are working with Scientists Warning Europe (SWE) on this issue. A “2030 Statement” will soon be published by SWE on this very issue, which will be signed by at least twenty scientists.

To prove that achieving net CO2 neutrality by 2030 is realistic from the economic standpoint, we encourage studies assessing the economic savings and greatest benefits (in terms of health, reduction of air pollution etc.) if we turn countries/cities carbon neutral by 2030 instead of 2050. READ MORE

Second step – Opinion polls

To understand whether the citizens of the world are ready to abandon fossil fuels by 2030 and in favour of the introduction of a carbon tax, in parallel with St Gallen University, we commissioned to Eumetra Mannheimer and YouGov opinion polls in ten of the most important world countries between January and July 2020. Based on such polls, about 2/3 of the respondents are in favour Opinion Polls Summary

Results of the opinion polls per country:

1 Previous Survey (2019); 2 Previous Survey (2019); 3 In Switzerland, the survey was conducted by St Gallen University. This survey is part of a longer annual survey St Gallen has been conducting since 2011.

Other relevant surveys

Third step – Calls to Action (in progress)

Publish and communicate in the social media calls to action on governments and legislators, also at local level, to adopt laws/policies aimed at decarbonising their countries/cities by 2030 on the basis of the broad scientific and popular consensus. We will also call on companies and individual citizens to become CO2 neutral immediately by abandoning to the extent possible the use of fossil fuels and by carbon offsetting the residual emissions of CO2. These calls to action should be backed by the most prominent people, corporations and institutions.

We will start with an ‘area test’ in one or more Italian municipalities by suggesting the mayors to promote to their citizens to become carbon neutral immediately. We are currently in touch with the representatives of the cities of Genova and Milan.

Fourth step – A growing CO2 neutral Community of individuals

Create a growing community of CO2 neutral individuals – with the goal of minimum 100,000 people within the next five years – and professional associations as well as turn entire cities CO2 neutral by 2030 (as Basel is planning to do; Copenhagen will be carbon neutral in 2025 and Helsinki in 2035).

We would like to promote with the major European and North American telecommunication companies a campaign aimed at collecting money which will be only used to carbon offset, on a voluntary basis, the lives of the greatest possible number of people. For example, if only the 3% of European and North American population pays 2 euros per month the revenues of the campaign would equal 900 million euros (1.08 billion dollars).

Fifth step – Public initiatives 

Promote public initiatives, petitions etc. to ensure that appropriate laws/policies are implemented for the transformation of the countries/cities to achieve net CO2 neutrality by 2030 (i.e. Switzerland).

Scientists Warning Europe have issued an open letter to the UK Prime Minister on behalf of 20 World leading scientists – urging for a 2030 net-zero target. With similar objective in mind we are trying to co-organize meetings between climatologists and politicians together with Bocconi and other universities.

Finally, we report this petition to the European Commission www.stopglobalwarming.eu which aims to introduce a price on CO2 emissions to combat climate change.

For the Italian version please click HERE