Science and TechClimate Change


UN report: We're losing progress in fight against climate change

A new report finds Earth will likely hit a critical climate change threshold in the coming years.
Emissions from a power plant
Posted at 10:39 AM, Mar 20, 2023

A United Nations panel issued a report Mondayindicating that humans are losing progress in the fight against climate change and urged nations to reduce carbon emissions. 

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change called efforts over the last five years to reduce emissions “insufficient.” 

The tone of the report was dour, suggesting that mankind needs to adapt to climate change. 

“Almost half of the world’s population lives in regions that are highly vulnerable to climate change. In the last decade, deaths from floods, droughts and storms were 15 times higher in highly vulnerable regions,“ said Aditi Mukherji, one of the 93 authors of the report.

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It also says that emissions on Earth need to be cut in half in order to keep the temperature increases below 1.5 degrees Celsius since the start of the industrial era.

“Mainstreaming effective and equitable climate action will not only reduce losses and damages for nature and people, it will also provide wider benefits,” said IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee. “This Synthesis Report underscores the urgency of taking more ambitious action and shows that, if we act now, we can still secure a liveable sustainable future for all.”

The report says the world should embrace low-carbon electrification, walking, cycling and public transport. It adds that besides climate change, these efforts would improve air quality and overall health. 

“The greatest gains in wellbeing could come from prioritizing climate risk reduction for low-income and marginalized communities, including people living in informal settlements,” said Christopher Trisos, one of the report’s authors. “Accelerated climate action will only come about if there is a many-fold increase in finance. Insufficient and misaligned finance is holding back progress.”