Terrifying climate change warning: 12 years until we’re doomed

Many people might think that they have little personal involvement with any of these - but the IPCC authors say that's not the case.

It's intended as a guide for policymakers who are aiming to limit temperature rise to the target 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Two of the most intense typhoons on record have hit the city in the last two years - Hato last year and Mangkhut last month.

"The overarching context of this report is this: human influence has become a principal agent of change on the planet", adding that "the spread of fossil-fuel-based material consumption and changing lifestyles is a major driver of global resource use, and the main contributor to rising greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions".

To ensure the planet is liveable, global Carbon dioxide emissions have to be reduced by 45% from 2010 levels by 2030 and renewables must provide up to 85% of global electricity by 2050 to meet targets.

The report identifies various routes by which emissions cuts would limit warming to 1.5℃; each makes assumptions about future changes in, for example, economic strategy, population growth and the rate at which low carbon energy is adopted.

The WWF called on the European Union to take urgent action to limit global warming to 1.5ºC, saying in a press release: "Approved by 195 governments, the report underscores the small window of opportunity we have to make immediate, deep and transformational changes - without which the world we know will be irreversibly changed".

At current levels of greenhouse gas emissions, we could pass the 1.5C marker as early as 2030, and no later than mid-century, the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change reported with "high confidence".

"Let's not forget that Australia accounts for just over 1% of global emissions, so there are a lot bigger players than us out there impacting on these arrangements".

The US delegation - the first since Donald Trump took office to work on an IPCC report - did not throw a monkey wrench into the process, as many here had feared. Coral reefs would have a chance to survive.

"Every extra bit of warming matters, especially since warming of 1.5ºC or higher increases the risk associated with long-lasting or irreversible changes, such as the loss of some ecosystems", says Hans-Otto Pörtner, Co-Chair of IPCC Working Group II, one of three working groups comprising the report, in a press statement. For instance, by 2100, global sea level rise would be 10 cm lower with global warming of 1.5°C compared with 2 °C.

The IPCC's Special Report on 1.5 degrees celsius shows that global carbon dioxide emissions must be halved by 2030 before falling to net zero by mid century at the latest.

Coral reefs would decline by 70% to 90% instead of being nearly completely wiped out. The IPCC 1.5 report starkly illustrates the difference between temperature rises of 1.5°C and 2°C-for many around the world this is a matter of life and death.

U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the accord previous year, invoking concerns for the U.S. economy, and has espoused pro-fossil fuel policies.

"Limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius is possible within the laws of chemistry and physics", said Jim Skea, co-chair of the IPCC working group dealing with the mitigation of climate change.

He said: 'We know what is needed to limit global warming to 1.50C and we can do it relying mostly on proven technologies such as decisively scaling up renewable energy and halting deforestation. "The next few years will be critical in the evolution of these efforts". Governments would have to increase renewable energy sources like solar and wind technology from 20 to around 67 percent, and reduce coal as an energy source from 40 percent to between 1 and 7 percent.

However, all methods "are at different stages of development and some are more conceptual than others, as they have not been tested at scale", the report warned.

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