Listen to the science

6 June 2014

The IPCC was here in town yesterday to hand deliver its latest reports to you. Today, the UNFCCC will start formal consideration of the IPCC reports in the next round of the Structured Expert Dialogues (SED). This is part of the 2013-2015 review of the adequacy of the long-term global goal and the overall progress towards achieving it.

Ministers in Bonn should welcome the good news from the IPCC: it is still possible to limit global warming to 2C. The really big news is a clear finding that the overall “cost” to the economy for the needed changes is smaller than the rounding errors commonly found in long-term economic growth projections. It’s not just the scale of the total global investment in infrastructure that has to change dramatically; rather, it is the direction of the investment that has to change in order to decarbonise the world’s infrastructure. That means complete transformation of our energy sector and important changes to our society as a whole. Investments in renewables have to triple soon and proven fossil reserves have to be left underground.

The IPCC WGII shows that the costs of inaction are catastrophic. The risks of climate change are widespread, they concern every region and every sector. Ministers, be courageous and take decisive, ambitious action today. The people, biodiversity and ecosystems upon which they depend are counting on you. 

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