September 26, 2021

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There is no room for doubt or hesitation - energy and climate

There is no room for doubt or hesitation – energy and climate

The latest report to the United Nations Climate Panel was released today. The rhetoric has never been clearer: Climate change and the extreme temperatures we are seeing now are caused by man-made emissions. And every ton of carbon dioxide2 From now on we contribute to further warming.

the report It is the first part of the sixth major synthesis report of the Climate Committee. It is about the scientific basis of the report. 14,000 scientific studies have been used as a basis, and the conclusions are clearer than they have been in the history of the IPCC: Climate change is here now. Undoubtedly, they are the result of human activity.

Useful Links

Report site

norwegian environment agency Created a landing page with information and summaries in Norwegian

Interactive Atlas of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Shows how the changes will affect regions around the world

– This summer, the world was exposed to several extreme weather events, such as a heat wave in the United States and Canada, dramatic floods in Western Europe and China, and wildfires in Turkey and Italy. it’s scary. Unfortunately, the Climate Commission tells us that such extreme weather will happen more often and become more intense, and is caused by our emissions, says Environment Director Elaine Hambro in a press release from the Norwegian Environment Agency.

The report from the Climate Commission is based on existing research. It is a comprehensive review of the state of the climate today and the relationship between greenhouse gas emissions and the warming that we observe. Perhaps most surprising is the fact that the links and conclusions have been established with a much greater degree of certainty than in previous IPCC reports.

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Strongest scientific basis

The clear language is directly related to the fact that the conclusions of the IPCC have a much stronger scientific foundation than before. There is no longer any doubt about the relationship between human activity and climate change that we see now.

– The report says the same thing as before, with one important difference. Now the observations show what the models said before, and we have more observations, longer durations and more methods, says Asger Sortberg, a professor at UiB and the Bjerknes Center in a case Bjerknes Center locations.

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The warming was, if anything, somewhat higher than previously estimated. Natural variance may have “masked” some of the warming prior to 2012.

Thus, researchers are also more confident in the link between greenhouse gas emissions and extreme events such as droughts, wildfires and floods, which we have seen recently.

The report does not describe these events directly, but concludes with the established fact that episodes of extreme weather, particularly heat, are becoming more intense and occurring more frequently as a result of man-made warming, says climate researcher Bjorn Samsett in a press release from CICERO.

Irreversible changes

And many changes can be irreversible in practice – it would take hundreds or thousands of years to change them again. This is especially true regarding melting ice and sea level rise.

Previous major reports have based so-called development trajectories on emissions, with the most pessimistic in particular met with some criticism. In the new flagship report, the Climate Panel uses more complex development scenarios instead, Shared social and economic pathwaysor SSP. These are open to analyze different future paths with different political and economic developments globally.

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The Climate Commission estimates that regardless of the scenario, we will see an average temperature of 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels over the next 20 years.

The consequences come:

For Norway, this will, according to CICERO, experience:

  • Longer summer and shorter winter
  • More heat waves
  • Several bouts of torrential rains and floods in Europe, North America, Africa and Asia
  • Several periods of agricultural drought in many places

– At the same time, the report also says that every ton of carbon dioxide2number of emissions. If we can limit warming and quickly reduce emissions to what we call net zero in 2050, global warming can still be reduced to two degrees, says Kiki Cleven, director of the Perkins Center for Climate Research.

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