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11 October 2018, 08:19 | Ross Houston
Landmark UN climate report warns time quickly running out
The IPCCreport underwent an extensive peer-review process that elicited tens of thousands of comments and includes a special "summary for policymakers" that resulted from discussions among scientists and government officials last week in Incheon, South Korea, the Post reports. "Climate change is already affecting people, livelihood and ecosystems all around the world".
He was reacting to a report released Monday by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) which stated that India could witness deadly heatwaves if the planet's temperature goes up by two degrees Celsius.
Temperatures during summer heatwaves, such as those just experienced across Europe this summer, can be expected to increase by 3 degrees C says the report.
The 1.5-degree scenario will require cutting Carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 45 percent over the 20-year period from 2010 to 2030 and to a net zero by 2050-net zero meaning that all Carbon dioxide released will need to be captured and stored or reused.
Dale Marshall, national program manager at Environmental Defence, said the ongoing political fight over carbon pricing and criticism of Liberal energy policies is scaring the government into being more timid about its climate plan, while the report shows being timid is not going to cut it.
The report highlights a number of climate change impacts that could be avoided by limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared to 2°C, or more.
"The overarching context of this report is this: human influence has become a principal agent of change on the planet", adding that "the spread of fossil-fuel-based material consumption and changing lifestyles is a major driver of global resource use, and the main contributor to rising greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions".
Hoesung Lee, Chair of IPCC says, "Limiting warming to 1.5 degrees is not impossible but will require unprecedented transitions in all aspects of society".
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We have been warned: There are now only 12 years left for us to stop global warming in its tracks.
As part of the Paris Agreement in 2015, its creators included the aim of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change by "holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2ºC above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5ºC above pre-industrial levels".
The launch of the report will spark renewed calls for governments around the world to act.
The Paris Agreement, from which the US has effectively withdrawn under the Trump presidency, commits countries to "holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels".
The effectiveness of such techniques are unproven at large scale and some may carry significant risks for sustainable development, the report notes. We're up against a lot, even if we do elect a leader who, unlike the current one, doesn't think it's a good idea to lower what's known as the "social cost of carbon", or an estimate of the amount of damage caused by carbon dioxide on the atmosphere and global warming.
The authors said global warming is likely to reach 1.5 deg C as early as 2030 if it continues to increase at the current rate.
The president in recent months has slammed wind power as a subsidy-dependent "killing field" for birds, all while rolling back a slew of regulations to boost the coal sector.
"The next few years are probably the most important in our history", said Debra Roberts, an IPCC co-chair.
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