It is still possible to forestall most of the dire impacts, but it really requires unprecedented, transformational change. The idea that there still is a pathway forward, I think, is a point that should give us some hope.

Ko Barrett, vice chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
divider-line image

UN sounds alarm over major ‘irreversible’ climate change

divider-line image

Environment minister defends government’s climate plan

Climate change intensifying Mediterranean region disasters

divider-line image

Global warming ‘unequivocally’ human driven, at unprecedented rate: IPCC

Climate change is widespread, rapid, and intensifying, and some trends are now irreversible, at least during the present time frame, according to the latest much-anticipated Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, released on Monday.

Human-induced climate change is already affecting many weather and climate extremes in every region across the globe. Scientists are also observing changes across the whole of Earth’s climate system; in the atmosphere, in the oceans, ice floes, and on land.

Many of these changes are unprecedented, and some of the shifts are in motion now, while some – such as continued sea level rise – are already ‘irreversible’ for centuries to millennia, aheadthe report warns.

But there is still time to limit climate change, IPCC experts say. Strong and sustained reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases, could quickly make air quality better, and in 20 to 30 years global temperatures could stabilize.

‘Code red for humanity’

The UN Secretary-General António Guterres said the Working Group’s report was nothing less than “a code red for humanity. The alarm bells are deafening, and the evidence is irrefutable”.

He noted that the internationally-agreed threshold of 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels of global heating was “perilously close. We are at imminent risk of hitting 1.5 degrees in the near term. The only way to prevent exceeding this threshold, is by urgently stepping up our efforts, and persuing the most ambitious path.

We must act decisively now, to keep 1.5 alive.”

The UN chief in a detailed reaction to the report, said that solutions were clear. “Inclusive and green economies, prosperity, cleaner air and better health are possible for all, if we respond to this crisis with solidarity and courage“, he said.

He added that ahead of the crucial COP26 climate conference in Glasgow in November, all nations – especiall the advanced G20 economies – needed to join the net zero emissions coaltion, and reinforce their promises on slowing down and reversing global heating, “with credible, concrete, and enhanced Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs)” that lay out detailed steps.

Human handiwork

The report, prepared by 234 scientists from 66 countries, highlights that human influence has warmed the climate at a rate that is unprecedented in at least the last 2,000 years.

In 2019, atmospheric CO2 concentrations were higher than at any time in at least 2 million years, and concentrations of methane and nitrous oxide were higher than at any time in the last 800,000 years.

Global surface temperature has increased faster since 1970 than in any other 50-year period over a least the last 2,000 years. For example, temperatures during the most recent decade (2011–2020) exceed those of the most recent multi-century warm period, around 6,500 years ago, the report indicates.

Meanwhile, global mean sea level has risen faster since 1900, than over any preceding century in at least the last 3,000 years.

The document shows that emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities are responsible for approximately 1.1°C of warming between 1850-1900, and finds that averaged over the next 20 years, global temperature is expected to reach or exceed 1.5°C of heating.

divider-line image

The $8bn EV you’ve probably never heard of

divider-line image

Good news: Some climate change impacts are ‘reversible.’ Here’s what that means

Carbon removal can reverse temperature changes in the long-term, but can’t stop sea level rise

The latest UN climate report this week raised the alarm over the “irreversible” impacts of climate change, such as rising seas and coastal flooding that we will continue to experience for centuries or longer — even if we stop emitting greenhouse gases and halt global warming now.

“We are now committed to some aspects of climate change, some of which are irreversible for hundreds to thousands of years,” said Tamsin Edwards, a climate scientist at King’s College London and co-author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report released Monday.

The good news is that some impacts, such the warming of the Earth’s surface, can be reversed by removing carbon from the atmosphere — at least in theory.

Read More…

divider-line image

Climate Change: The Carbon Cycle | Corinne Le Quéré

divider-line image


What the new UN report warning of climate impacts means for Canadians

Expect more heat waves, fires and flood events in future

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) once again issued a dire report warning that without a radical reduction of our greenhouse gas emissions, we are on a course for global warming that will have grave consequences.

Monday’s report, which examined several scenarios, including one of low carbon emissions and one of high carbon emissions, or a business-as-usual approach, said the planet has already warmed almost 1.2 C above pre-industrial levels. The IPCC is calling on world governments to reduce CO2 emissions to limit that warming to 1.5 C, though it appears we may hit that threshold within the next two decades unless drastic reductions are made.

We are already seeing the effects of climate change across Canada, including more intense wildfiresheat waves and drought. There is nowhere — and no one — that will not be affected.

Here are just some of the impacts we can expect across the country.

Read More…

divider-line image

Every 6 seconds, the planet loses a football pitch worth of tropical rainforest

divider-line image

Toronto is designed for a climate that doesn’t exist anymore and it needs to ‘face the reality,’ experts say

IPCC study warns of more heat waves, droughts, floods and other extreme weather

Toronto is designed for a climate that doesn’t exist anymore, experts say, and they warn the city has to come up with a better plan to cope with the smoggier, hotter, soggier and stormier weather that’s plaguing it right now.

A report from the United Nations International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released this week suggests extreme weather events, from wildfires to floods to extreme heat, are the direct result of a climate that has already changed, and it will result in more unpredictable weather.

The IPCC document also suggests the world can avoid warming of more than 1.5 degrees if massive cuts to greenhouse gas emissions are made. But according to Sarah Buchanan, the campaigns director for the Toronto Environmental Alliance, the city needs to start adapting to the warming climate it’s already got, rather than just focusing on lowering emissions for the future.

“That’s something Toronto’s going to face the reality of,” she said. “[Extreme weather] is happening more quickly than expected, and this report drives home that the science supports our experiences.”

“It’s going to cost a lot, but it’s going to cost a lot less than not dealing with these impacts,” Buchanan added. “The city needs to find out the cost of climate change, and put in place revenue tools to recover that cost.”

Read More…

divider-line image

divider-line image

divider-line image