The Nobel Prize winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has just issued the third and final report in its current (Fifth) assessment of the state of scientific knowledge relevant to climate change.

Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change deals with the options for mitigating climate change and the urgency for doing so.

The report notes that global greenhouse gas emissions grew more quickly between 2000 and 2010 than in each of the three previous decades.

Climate experts advocate the urgency of limiting the increase in global mean temperature to two degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, noting in this report that only “major institutional and technological change will give a better than even chance that global warming will not exceed this threshold.” Beyond that point, catastrophic consequences must be anticipated. One co-chair of the report’s working group comments: “There is a clear message from science: To avoid dangerous interference with the climate system, we need to move away from business as usual.”

The Panel’s media statement says that “to have a likely chance of limiting the increase in global mean temperature to two degrees Celsius, means lowering global greenhouse gas emissions by 40 to 70 percent compared with 2010 by mid-century, and to near-zero by the end of this century.”

This NY Times article provides an excellent overview of the latest report and its implications. From that article:

“Though it remains technically possible to keep planetary warming to a tolerable level, only an intensive push over the next 15 years to bring those emissions under control can achieve the goal, the committee found.

“We cannot afford to lose another decade,” said Ottmar Edenhofer, a German economist and co-chairman of the committee that wrote the report. “If we lose another decade, it becomes extremely costly to achieve climate stabilization.”

For serious students, this latest report, as well as the two previous reports in this series — Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability and Climate Change 2013: The Physical Science Basis — can be found on the IPCC website here.

15 years … It’s wake-up time!

Tom Belford

P.S. Or we can close our eyes and click our heels together three times … and hope our children and grandchildren forgive us.

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4 Comments

  1. With previous IPCC prognostications being way off the mark over the last 2 decades, we are supposed to be in awe of their forthcoming accuracy from their hopelessly flawed computer models. Yeah right!

    Now that is a bigger ask than getting HBRC to show all the info on the dam ;-)

  2. It appears you’ve thrown your hat in with the deluded masses secumbing to the near mass hysteria surrounding global warming..sure reduce emissions but please get some perspective on the big picture. How arrogant to imagine that mankind can in any way control the warming of the globe. this arrant stupidity is such a colossal waste of time and MONEY its patently obvious to me you’ll probably be first in the line for Auntie Helen;s World Government (and all that entails.) Why do I laugh openly at the futility of your (well ententioned no doubt) claims? Consider this salient fact and then revise your b.s. waffle. When mount Pinatubo erupted in the 80’s more co2 was released into the atmosphere than has been produced by all the internal combustion engines ever produced! Sure, educate those who prefer to toss their unwanted plastic bags out the window as they drive down the road in their motors (of course you would probably have them on bicycles…) But remember there are always two sides to every story, not just yours. Personally I follow the theory that the planet earth has probably seen several generations of mankind during the billions of years it has existed..your specious claims are nothing but one-sided and disappointing from a source that should present a more even and balanced view. Oh, and I bet you don’t publish this!!

  3. I reckon you are on the money here Julian!! Believe me from our history, the World Planet is going to do whatever it wants too when it’s good and ready to do so and there is nothing Mankind can do to alter that…NOTHING!!! so enjoy what we have and be grateful that you were here to share it.
    Perhaps a more interesting scenario is, when will the Sun stop shinning, will it ever burn out or go out!!????
    I have been going out to Ocean Beach for about 45 years now, the tide come’s in, the tide goes out, sometimes the wind blows it in a bit further than normal, but other than that in the last 45 years nothing yes Nothing has changed, and it is my guess, that in another 45 years, it will still be doing the same things as it is now, so I will get my Great Great Grandchildren to post an update.

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