Unprecedented action needed to curb global warming, UN report says

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If the average global temperature temporarily exceeded 1.5C, additional carbon removal techniques would be required to return warming to below 1.5C by 2100.

The report will be a key scientific input into the Katowice Climate Change Conference in Poland in December when governments will review the Paris Agreement to tackle climate change.

The report, commissioned by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in accordance with the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, synthesizes efforts from 91 authors and editors across 40 countries, who reviewed and analyzed more than 6,000 studies.

Writing of the report was led by three working groups - one to assess the physical scientific basis of climate change, the second to look at impacts, adaptation and vulnerability, and the third to assess climate change mitigation.

The report said the lower target would mean the Arctic Ocean would be free of sea ice in summer only once per century not at least once a decade under the higher target.

Even with a temperature increase of 1.5C, coral reefs are expected to decline by 70-90 per cent.

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The newly published IPCC report highlights and compares the predicted severity of numerous climate change threats in scenarios with a 1.5°C, and 2°C temperature rise.

Areas like sub-Saharan Africa and the Mediterranean would still suffer from droughts, but farms would be able to grow more food than they could with 2 degrees of warming.

Aiming to limit global warming at 1.5℃ is a mammoth task at hand, it requires a massive social transformation in the way we consume energy.

CSE said by refusing to endorse the findings of the IPCC's 1.5°C Report, the United States has again given a clear signal that it would continue with its "climate regressive agenda", which includes obstructing the work of the UNFCCC and promoting fossil fuels like coal and gas.

The report finds that limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require "rapid and far-reaching" transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities.

Allowing the global temperature to temporarily exceed or "overshoot" 1.5 °C would mean a greater reliance on techniques that remove Carbon dioxide from the air to return global temperature to below 1.5 °C by 2100. But the report warns that "the effectiveness of such techniques are unproven at large scale and some may carry significant risks for sustainable development".

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"It's a line in the sand and what it says to our species is that this is the moment and we must act now", said Debra Roberts, a co-chair of the working group on impacts.

"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".

Below is some background about the IPCC and the report. "We must raise our ambitions in combating climate change in line with the outcome of this report, and turn today's challenges into opportunities".

The latest IPCC report examines the potential of limiting global warming to 1.5º Celsius, a half-degree less than the oft-cited 2º C target called for in the Paris Climate agreement.

The report was meant to ring alarm bells about global warming, noting that temperatures are likely to be 1.5 degrees higher by 2030 to 2052 based on current commitments to reduce emissions made under the Paris deal.

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. At 1.5 degrees, fewer species would go extinct.

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This report shows the longer we wait, "the more hard, the more expensive and the more unsafe it will be", said Bill Hare, a physicist with the nonprofit group Climate Analytics.