The world’s largest ever report into climate change has been published and it sets out the stark reality of the state of the planet.
234 scientists read over 14,000 research papers to write the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report and has been described as code red for humanity by UN Secretary-General António Guterres.
Key findings include:
- The past five years have been the hottest on record since 1850.
- The global surface temperature was 1.09C higher in the decade between 2011 to 2020 than between 1850 to1900.
- The recent rate of sea level rise has nearly tripled compared with 1901 to 1971.
- Human influence is 90 percent the main driver of the global retreat of glaciers since the 1990s and the decrease in Arctic sea-ice.
- It is virtually certain that hot extremes including heatwaves have become more frequent and more intense since the 1950s, while cold events have become less frequent and less severe.
This sobering report contains no real surprises. Nevertheless, scientists are hopeful that if global emissions are cut in half by 2030 and net zero is achieved by the middle of this century, we can halt and possibly reverse the rise in temperatures.
The message is clear. The slim chance we have left to avert heating above 1.5C must be immediately grasped. There is no time for delay and no room for excuses. Every single thing we do each and every day from now must work towards tackling the climate crisis, cutting emissions, and building resilience.
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