IPCC Begins Discussion on Global Warming of 1.5°C

Against the backdrop of a record year of climate change impacts such as heatwaves and droughts across the world, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) yesterday began considering the critically important key findings of its Special Report entitled ‘Global Warming of 1.5°C’.

In time for this year’s United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP24), to be held in Katowice, Poland in December, the special report on 1.5C was mandated by world’s governments in 2015 when they adopted the Paris Climate Change Agreement. 

The Paris Agreement aims to limit the rise in average global temperatures to well below 2ºC and as close as possible to 1.5ºC above pre-industrial levels.  Keeping average global temperature increases as low as possible is key to limiting future potentially severe climate change impacts around the world. 

For the ‘Global Warming 1.5C’ report, the IPCC has therefore assessed the most up-to-date scientific findings about the damage that will be caused by a 1.5°C warming. It also compared this to the damage that would be caused by a 2°C warming.

At the week-long meeting in the Republic of Korea government delegates will consider the key findings of the report line-by-line and adopt these as the “Summary for Policy Makers”.

At the opening of the Songdo meeting, Hoesung Lee, chair of the IPCC described the event as “one of the most important meetings in the IPCC’s history”. 

“Scientists have been warning us for years that we can expect to see more extreme weather with climate change. The heat waves, wildfires, and heavy rainfall events of recent months all over the world underscore these warnings,” he said.

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