'Halve emissions or face catastrophe as Arctic ice melts'


"The world is already witnessing the impacts of climate change - from hurricanes in America, heat waves in Europe, droughts in Africa to floods in Asia".

That's the warning from one high profile regulator. In the Paris accord, 197 countries agreed to the goal of holding global temperatures "well below" 2°C above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5°C.

Jacinda Ardern says the panel of global scientists have spelled out the difference between taking the action needed to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees celsius and it reaching 2 percent or higher.

The consequences of a 1.5 degree rise includes warming of extreme temperatures in many regions, increases in frequency, intensity, and/or amount of heavy precipitation in several regions and an increase in intensity or frequency of droughts in some regions.

At 1.5 degrees, megacities like Lagos, in Nigeria, and Shanghai, China, could suffer heat stress, exposing more than 350 million people to that risk, experts say.

Carbon emissions must fall by 45pc by 2030, reaching "net zero" by 2050.

The IPCC report found that Australia was responsible for approximately 1 per cent of global emissions despite accounting for only 0.3 per cent of the global population.

But the effects of not meeting the 1.5C target would mean huge changes to the world.

That's not lost on Jones.

If Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) is anything to go by, the impact of 1.5 degree Celsius rise in temperature would have much more impact than it was thought and a rise in a couple of degrees would bring catastrophe for nations like India.

Jones past year established the Carbon Risk Initiative, a database that includes information on the amount of oil, gas, coal and utilities investments held by insurance companies, and whether the insurers have divested from thermal coal, the amount of thermal coal divested and any future commitments to divest.

Annual investment of more than €2trn is needed.

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KING: The timeline in this report is really sobering.

The new IPCC report changes that.

"The world is already experiencing the deadly effects of global warming at 1C", chief executive Caoimhe de Barra said. The report was prepared under the scientific leadership of all three IPCC working groups.

"We've seen how quickly consumer opinion could shift", Martin said.

The IPCC, an global consortium comprised of hundreds of climate change researchers assembled by the United Nations, said "the next few years are probably the most important in our history".

Sue Reid, vice president of climate and energy for Ceres, a sustainability leadership advocate that has for years called on the industry to do more to battle climate change, called the new IPCC report a "striking wakeup call to action".

University of New South Wales climate scientist Sarah Perkins-Kirkpatrick says "virtually all" coral reefs would start dying off if global temperatures increased by 2C.

"The faster we act, the more we reduce the risk to people everywhere, especially the most vulnerable". "It's about speed and scale now". However, limiting the global temperature rise to 1.5℃ as opposed to 2℃ can help in reducing poverty as well as reduce losses in yields of maize, rice, wheat and other cereal crops, mainly in Asia.

The report also takes into account the possibility of removing Carbon dioxide with technologies.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a world body assessing the science related to climate change, urged "rapid and far-reaching" changes in all aspects of the entire world on Monday to fight global warming after adopting a special report on the issue.

KING: May I ask how long is too long?