It is no longer possible to prevent global warming in the next 20 to 30 years, and some of the changes brought about by global warming are now impossible to undo in the short term, according to new report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The document presents the most comprehensive analysis of the physical science behind climate change ever accumulated in human history. The 284 scientists working on the project spent eight years examining data from more than 14,000 studies. They say that human activities are “unequivocally” behind the rapid climate change on Earth.
Since the mid-19th century, the planet’s temperature has risen by 1.1 degrees Celsius, or 2 degrees Celsius, as a direct result of greenhouse gas emissions associated with the combustion of coal, oil and other fossil fuels for energy. We have already seen the effects that a warmer planet can have on humans. It wasn’t until earlier this summer that parts of Canada and the northwestern Pacific in the U.S. fell from a hot and unprecedented heat wave that fused power cords, bent roads i killed people.
“Many of the changes observed in the climate are unprecedented in thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of years, and some of the changes that have already been initiated – such as the constant rise in sea levels – are irreversible over hundreds to thousands of years,” the IPCC said.
Unless governments commit to a sharp reduction in emissions, limiting warming to targets set in Paris Climate Agreement it will be “out of reach,” the report warns. With 1.5 degrees Celsius as global temperatures rise, there will be more and more life-threatening heat waves, droughts that cause millions struggling to find water, and a steady rise in sea levels that is likely to displace coastal communities around the world.
“We can expect a significant jump in extreme weather over the next 20 or 30 years,” said Piers Forster, one of the climatologists who contributed to the report. The New York Times. “Unfortunately, things are likely to get worse than they are today.”
Reiterating previous UN reports, the IPCC also warned a Increase by 3 or even 4 degrees Celsius global temperatures would be catastrophic. With each additional degree of warming, there is a greater risk that the planet will pass certain milestones that could even lead to dramatic climate change. According to the IPCC, a drastic reduction in emissions can limit the worse effects of climate change and keep warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius. However, it could take between 20 and 80 years for global temperatures to stabilize.
The report will be in the spotlight when diplomats travel to Glasgow, Scotland, to attend UN meetings COP26 Summit on climate change. As one of the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitters, the U.S. can play a significant role in the following events. After rejoining Paris Climate Agreement, President Biden promised that America would do so halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Now is more than ever time for action.
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