UN Climate Change Report: Governments Should Act Now
The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change met this week to discuss the latest on climate change and issued a report, adding that it should serve as a "wake-up call" to governments and society about the role of humans play in increasing global warming.
Over 800 authors from 39 countries contributed to the working group's 2,500-page assessment, which draws on millions of observations and numerical data from climate model simulations. In its first report for six years, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change states that global warming is 'unequivocal' - and it is '95 per cent certain' that human activity is the 'dominant' cause.
The IPCC report depicts clearly how a slow response from society can drastically increases the risks because greenhouse gases continue to accumulate in the atmosphere, and the installation of long-lasting high-carbon capital and infrastructure locks in future emissions.
"It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century," the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report, which was published Friday, found.
"This report confirms with even more certainty than in the past -- that it is extremely likely that the changes in our climate system for the past half a century are due to human influence," Michel Jarraud, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization, which co-sponsored the IPCC, said in a statement.
"It should serve as yet another wake-up call that our activities today will have a profound impact on society not only for us but for many generations to come," he said.
Still others questioned the credibility of the predictions, pointing out that the IPCC's research had signally failed to predict the ongoing 'pause' in rising world temperatures.
Dr Benny Peiser, of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, said: "The IPCC has taken a huge gamble. Unless global temperatures begin to rise in the next few years, the IPCC is very likely going to suffer an existential blow to its credibility."