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Climate Ambition

Introducing the 1.5C Map Room

A collaborative evidence base and engagement platform for climate action

RMI is creating a new engagement platform and analysis toolkit to accelerate 1.5C-aligned climate ambition and action among leading companies, subnational governments, and policymakers. Existing decarbonization models and climate commitments fall short on specifics, leading to unambitious assumptions about the speed of change possible and masking opportunities for bolder strategy and policy action.

The 1.5C Map Room will bring together curated, readily accessible online resources and new analysis tools to support organizations and coalitions that are developing high-ambition goals and actionable implementation strategies. This includes existing initiatives such as the UN’s Race to Zero campaign and others that are marshaling non-state actors to set emissions reduction goals aligned to 1.5C pathways.

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Three challenges 1.5C Map Room addresses:

  1. Challenge No. 1

    Climate goals lack specificity and accountability.

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    1.5C Pathways Explorer

  2. Challenge No. 2

    The need for new analysis methods.

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    Transformation Toolkit

  3. Challenge No. 3

    Innovators must collaborate to transform systems.

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    Action Accelerator

Challenge No. 1: Non-state actors are leading the charge with climate action goals…

Explore race-to-zero data

Click to see climate pledge data by sector and company

... but most of these lack the specificity, timeliness, and accountability to put us on a track to 1.5C.

Science-based targets aligned to 1.5C are a critically important starting point, but these will need further elaboration and refinement for specific sectors, geographies, and key actors to translate goals into actionable strategies. At the same time, policymakers need better visibility into the implications of corporate commitments and actions to better inform and coordinate policy decisions.

Challenge No. 2: Existing 1.5C pathway analyses are not readily usable for designing goals and strategies...

Many such models are created at the global level, updated once a year, and use opaque assumptions that vary significantly across studies. Even where these pathways align on total emissions reductions, sector and geography trajectories often diverge, making it hard to translate results into action for a specific region, industry, or company.

Diverse 1.5C energy sector pathways based on varying assumptions and models In gigatons CO2 per year
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Sources: IPCC; IEA World Energy Outlooks 2021; BNEF New Energy Outlook 2020; BNEF New Energy Outlook 2021; IRENA GlobalRenewables Outlook 2020; BP Energy Outlook 2020; Shell Sky 2021; 2021 State of Climate Action Report; RMI Analysis

... and they often don’t adequately reflect fast-moving changes in technology, business models, policy, or behavior.

Most models and forecasts underestimate aspects of how systems change, assuming that transitions will unfold more slowly rather than quickly. But real-world examples show that rapid transformation is possible. As a result, decision makers often struggle to design ambitious emissions-reduction plans, business strategies, or policies that reflect just how quickly change may happen.

Percent electricity generation from wind and solar
Selection of models predicting percentage of use of renewable energy

Sources: IPCC; IEA Net Zero by 2050 (2021); BNEF New Energy Outlook 2021; IRENA World Energy Outlook 2021; BP Energy Outlook 2020; RMI Analysis

Challenge No. 3: Innovators must work together to develop a vision and test ideas for 1.5C-aligned systems change...

We need a better understanding of the potential impacts of collective action, tipping points for technologies and behaviors, and “ambition loops” among public and private sector actors. These are the elements that drive systems change.

Collective action Corporate and government players working together create an environment for ambition — click the arrows to see how it works.Diagram of ambition loops

Source: RMI. For further information, see

... but we need new methods and tools to support such collaboration across sectors and geographies.

Exposing potential pathways for non-linear change requires timely and detailed analytical support to explore scenarios and outcomes that span multiple sectors, value chains, business models, and policy jurisdictions.

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Sources: Chart, IEA Net Zero 2050; Diagram, RMI Analysis

1.5C Map Room: A Collaborative Evidence Base and Engagement Platform

1.5C Map Room will provide curated resources, new tools, and collaboration support for organizations and initiatives working to unlock transformative change. It will include:

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1.5C Pathways Explorer

Curated insights and comparative analysis to improve access and usability of energy systems information:

  • Characteristics and trade-offs among 1.5C scenarios and pathways, including key differences and limitations
  • Translation of pathways into meaningful real-economy indicators for specific sectors and geographies
  • Evidence for how those pathways are both achievable and beneficial
A map pin with a shadow beneath it Arrows crossing paths

Transformation Toolkit

Research, analysis, and modeling that illustrates how systems can change rapidly and how to accelerate change:

  • Case studies and modeling of catalytic market forces that drive economic transitions (e.g., technology learning curves)
  • Ambition loop case studies, including both successful and unsuccessful examples
  • Translation of voluntary corporate and subnational government pledges into implied tangible, real-economy outcomes
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Action Accelerator

Collaborative modeling and stakeholder engagement to support actionable 1.5C roadmaps and drive new ambition loops:

  • Forward-looking analysis of catalytic systems change applied to perceived barriers to 1.5C pathways at the sector level
  • A practitioners forum where analysts, modelers, decision makers, and strategists can share best practices for understanding transformative systems change
  • Convening and collaboration support for existing sectoral or regional decarbonization initiatives
  • Open-access and user-friendly model with configurable decarbonization pathways

How 1.5C Map Room will contribute to the climate action ecosystem

Our goal is to work in service of leading corporations, subnational governments, and national policymakers who are committed to keeping the 1.5C target alive, as well as the existing sectoral change initiatives and goal-setting organizations working with these decision makers to align their strategies and policies with the pathways required for transformation.

How change can happen Map Room will organize, interpret, and elevate the most compelling research and models that describe pathways to keep long-term warming to 1.5C and meet other sustainable development goals.Diagram of 1.5C Map Room ecosystem