In a report by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, released on October 8, the world’s leading climate scientists warned that there is only a dozen years for global warming to be capped at a maximum of 1.5C.
To achieve this, urgent and unprecedented changes are needed, and any rise in temperatures above 1.5C significantly worsens the risks of drought, floods, more intense hurricanes, extreme heat and poverty for hundreds of millions of people.
Carbon emissions would have to be cut by 45 per cent by 2030 and come down to zero by 2050. The IPCC makes clear that climate change is already happening, and it upgraded its risk warning from previous reports warning that every fraction of additional warming would worsen the impact.
“The scientists who reviewed 6,000 works referenced in the report, said the change caused by just half a degree came as a revelation — ‘We can see there is a difference and it’s substantial’.”¹