International scientific body report on climate change warns of need to act now to prevent catastrophic impacts of climate change

IPCC

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's report, Global Warming of 1.5°C, an IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty, issues an urgent warning to governments worldwide.

"The report highlights a number of climate change impacts that could be avoided by limiting global warming to 1.5ºC compared to 2ºC, or more... Limiting global warming would also give people and ecosystems more room to adapt and remain below relevant risk thresholds... The report also examines pathways available to limit warming to 1.5ºC, what it would take to achieve them and what the consequences could be."

Please see links below to access the full report and responses from civil society.

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Auteur: Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, UK Government

"Top businesses across the UK have today announced significant pledges worth hundreds of millions of pounds to tackle climate change, marking the government’s first ever Green GB & NI Week.

Around 30 of the UK’s largest companies, from financial services to high street retailers, have unveiled plans to help cut emissions, from installing solar panels on office roofs to provide power for thousands of homes, to overhauling fleets of diesel trucks.

The UK is already a world leader when it comes to tackling climate change, cutting emissions by more than 40% since 1990 – more than any other G7country on a per person basis – while growing the economy. Through the modern Industrial Strategy, the government will continue to maximise the advantages for UK industry from the global shift to clean growth by leading the world in the development, manufacture and use of low carbon technologies and services. The number of ‘green collar’ job opportunities could reach 2 million by 2030 as part of this drive."

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Auteur: Amnesty International

"Amnesty warns that most options to remove carbon that has already been emitted will also likely violate human rights

With countless people worldwide already suffering the catastrophic effects of floods, heatwaves and droughts aggravated by climate change, governments must commit to much more ambitious emissions reduction targets to limit the global average temperature increase, or bear responsibility for loss of life and other human rights violations and abuses on an unprecedented scale...

Climate change mitigation measures that have not been human rights compliant have already resulted in violations. For example, in May 2018 Amnesty International documented how the Sengwer Indigenous people of Embobut Forest, Kenya were forced from their homes, sometimes with deadly force, and dispossessed of their ancestral lands as a result of a government drive to reduce deforestation. The government accuses the Sengwer of harming the forest, but has not provided any evidence for that claim.

Such projects should always be subject to human rights impact assessments before going ahead in order to accurately assess the potential harm."

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Auteur: Council of the European Union

Extracts - Council conclusions on preparations for the UNFCCC meetings in Katowice (2 - 14 December 2018)
 
"...URGENCY OF GLOBAL ACTION
 
4. UNDERLINES that all countries must enhance mitigation action in coherence with, among others: sustainable development and poverty eradication, increasing food security, achieving gender equality, protection of biodiversity, including through nature-based solutions, and respect for human rights, for right to health, and for the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities, for the benefit of present and future generations; in this context RECOGNISES the importance of enhancing the emphasis on science, education, training, public awareness, public participation and public access to information so as to enhance action under the Paris Agreement;
 
ADVANCING ACTION
 
12. further RECOGNISES the imperative of a just transition of workforce and creation of decent work and quality jobs as an important component of effective climate policy;
 
THE WAY TO KATOWICE
 
24. LOOKS forward to the full operationalisation of the Local Communities and Indigenous Platform;..."

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Auteur: Refugees International

"...Extreme weather events already displace upwards of 20 million people per year on average. The report forecasts more extreme precipitation and higher levels of sea level rise and finds with 'high confidence' that increased drought will drive forced migration and sustained conflict in certain regions. Least developed countries and indigenous peoples, the report finds, will be particularly impacted.  

Avoiding this fate is within the power of the global leaders. But doing so will require immediate and urgent action to mitigate the causes of climate change especially here in the United States, and to support the least developed countries to adapt to climate change that has occurred and will continue..."

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Auteur: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

A special report warns of the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty.

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Auteur: Center for International Environmental Law

"With the release today of its long-awaited Special Report on 1.5°C, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has confirmed what abundant science has long made clear: keeping temperatures increase below 1.5c is an imperative to substantially reduce risks of irreversible impacts threatening the survival of species and ecosystems and systemic consequences for communities around the globe.

The IPCC also recognizes and affirms that keeping warming to no more than 1.5°C remains achievable, but the window for doing so is narrow and closing rapidly. To have even a decent chance of avoiding the most catastrophic impacts of climate change, we must cut greenhouse emissions nearly in half by 2030 and reach net zero carbon emissions by no later than 2050. Doing so demands an immediate and complete transformation of our economy away from fossil fuels and towards clean energy sources, along with the protection and restoration of natural ecosystems that serve as a defense against climate change."

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Auteur: The Guardian

"The world’s leading climate scientists have warned there is only a dozen years for global warming to be kept to a maximum of 1.5C, beyond which even half a degree will significantly worsen the risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and poverty for hundreds of millions of people...

The half-degree difference could also prevent corals from being completely eradicated and ease pressure on the Arctic, according to the 1.5C study, which was launched after approval at a final plenary of all 195 countries in Incheon in South Korea that saw delegates hugging one another, with some in tears...

At 1.5C the proportion of the global population exposed to water stress could be 50% lower than at 2C, it notes. Food scarcity would be less of a problem and hundreds of millions fewer people, particularly in poor countries, would be at risk of climate-related poverty...

The IPCC maps out four pathways to achieve 1.5C, with different combinations of land use and technological change. Reforestation is essential to all of them as are shifts to electric transport systems and greater adoption of carbon capture technology..."

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Auteur: Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights

"States must accelerate action to address climate change — from solar electricity to climate-friendly agriculture practices — or risk locking in decades of grave human rights violations, a UN expert says.

In a statement following the release of a new scientific report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), David R. Boyd, the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment, said that climate change rated as one of the greatest threats to human rights...

Boyd said that for 25 years, scientists have issued increasingly clear warnings about the urgency of transforming economies and societies in cleaner, greener directions."

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