climate change tagged posts

Global warming set to break key 1.5C limit for first time

Our overheating world is likely to break a key temperature limit for the first time over the next few years, scientists predict. Researchers say there’s now a 66% chance we will pass the 1.5C global warming threshold between now and 2027. The chances are rising due to emissions from human activities plus the El Niño weather event expected this summer. If the world passes the limit, scientists stress the breach, while worrying, will likely be temporary.

Hitting the threshold would mean the world is 1.5C warmer than it was during the second half of the 19th Century, before fossil fuel emissions from industrialisation really began to ramp up.

The 1.5C figure has become a symbol of global climate change negotiations...

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Life in ocean ‘twilight zone’ at risk from warming

Climate change could dramatically reduce life in the deepest parts of our oceans that are reached by sunlight, scientists warn. Global warming could curtail life in the so-called twilight zone by as much as 40% by the end of the century, according to new research. The twilight zone lies between 200m (656ft) and 1,000m (3,281ft). It teems with life but was home to fewer organisms during warmer periods of Earth’s history, researchers found.

In research led by the University of Exeter, scientists looked at two warm periods in Earth’s past, about 50 million years ago and 15 million years ago, examining records from preserved microscopic shells. 

They found far fewer organisms lived in the zone during these periods, because bacteria degraded food more quickly, meaning less of it reached ...

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Recent, rapid ocean warming ahead of El Niño alarms scientists

A recent, rapid heating of the world’s oceans has alarmed scientists concerned that it will add to global warming. This month, the global sea surface hit a new record high temperature. It has never warmed this much, this quickly. Scientists don’t fully understand why this has happened. But they worry that, combined with other weather events, the world’s temperature could reach a concerning new level by the end of next year.

Experts believe that a strong El Niño weather event – a weather system that heats the ocean – will also set in over the next months.

Warmer oceans can kill off marine life, lead to more extreme weather and raise sea levels. They are also less efficient at absorbing planet-warming greenhouse gases.

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Act Now for a Sustainable Future For All

On Monday, the so-called “synthesis report” was published by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a body made up of hundreds of international scientists from a dizzying array of disciplines. The new report boils down six previous IPCC reports, published since 2018, which pulled together and analyzed thousands of climate science studies. 

It amounts to the most clear-eyed, up-to-date assessment of the climate crisis: how it’s affecting all corners of the world and its systems, and how humanity is faring in its attempts to mitigate disasters and adapt to those that are now unavoidable.

What is key about the IPCC report is that it’s signed off by national governments to confirm that they accept the scientific findings – and will incorporate them...

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IPCC: the climate handbook for a ‘liveable’ future

Earth is hotter than it has been in 125,000 years, but deadly heatwaves, storms and floods amplified by global warming could be but a foretaste as planet-heating fossil fuels put a “liveable” future at risk. So concludes the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which started a week-long meeting Monday to distill six landmark reports totalling 10,000 pages prepared by more than 1,000 scientists over the last six years.

Here are some of the main findings from those reports: 

– 1.5C or 2C? – 

The 2015 Paris Agreement called for capping global warming well below two degrees Celsius compared to late-19th century levels.

But a landmark IPCC report in 2018 left no doubt: only the treaty’s more ambitious aspirational limit of 1.5C could ensure a climate-safe world. 

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Protecting 30% of oceans by 2030 a huge challenge for the planet

How do we go from protecting eight per cent of marine areas to 30 per cent in less than 10 years? This question is at the heart of a global forum in Canada aiming to save marine ecosystems under threat from overfishing, pollution and climate change.

On the heels of the historic biodiversity agreement signed at COP15 in Montreal late last year, about 3,000 officials, scientists, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and Indigenous groups are meeting in Vancouver for the fifth International Marine Protected Areas Congress (IMPAC5), which opened on Friday (Feb 4) and runs until February 9.

Scientists have said the meeting is crucial for setting up a framework to reach the agreed target at COP15 of protecting 30 per cent of the planet’s lands and oceans by 2030.

It is an immense st...

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Does Marine Conservation Mitigate Climate Change?

Scientists discover the first evidence that marine conservation helps to reduce climate change. Marine protected areas act as a safeguard for oceans, seas, and estuaries. These regions help in the preservation of the plants and animals that are native to these waters, but the advantages of protected areas go well beyond their boundaries. A group of experts describes how marine protected areas support ecological and social adaptation to climate change and help in the sequestration of carbon in a study that was recently published in the journal One Earth

“Marine protected areas are increasingly being promoted as an ocean-based climate solution...

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Investigation reveals Egypt’s ‘super coral’ at risk

As Egypt hosts world leaders at COP27 to discuss action over climate change, an oil terminal is dumping toxic wastewater on the country’s Red Sea coast, an investigation by BBC News Arabic has found. A rare form of coral, that offers hope for preserving ocean life as the planet warms, could be a casualty. Leaked documents obtained by the BBC and non-profit journalism group SourceMaterial reveal that “produced water” from Egypt’s Ras Shukeir oil terminal is being dumped into the Red Sea every day.

The barely treated wastewater – which is brought to the surface during oil and gas drilling – contains high levels of toxins, oil and grease.

The documents, which were issued by the Gulf of Suez Petroleum Company (Gupco) in 2019 to try to hire a company to treat the water, say the pollution...

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The World must now Get2Cop

We’re on the “highway to hell”, the UN warned at COP27 – and not in a good way like AC/DC, but in a very bad way, with continuing weather chaos, famine and mass extinction facing us all.

“Red alert for humanity”, “life or death struggle”, “knocking on famine’s door”. These have all been UN assessments of the situation. But, has it changed anything?

Despite the UN’s increasingly inventive language designed to say how it is, another global climate summit looks to just past us by again.

This year’s COP27 summit – sponsored by Coca-Cola (the world’s number one producer of plastic waste) is really achieving nothing!

One UN official said yesterday – “the COP process is at a crossroads, it must urgently realise its purpose or risk poisoning the well for climate action...

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COP27: Key climate goal of 1.5C rise faces new challenge

Emissions of CO2 are rising so quickly there is now a 50% chance the world will cross a crucial climate change threshold soon, a new report suggests. Emissions for 2022 are expected to remain at record levels, lifted by people flying again after Covid. The report said that if emissions stay so high, the world faces a 50% risk of breaching a key 1.5C temperature rise threshold in nine years.

This would have sweeping consequences for poorer and developing countries.

Average temperatures are now 1.1C above pre-industrial levels, and that increase has already caused major climate disasters this year.

If global average temperatures were to rise to more than 1.5C, the UN says it would expose millions more people to potentially devastating climate impacts.

The researchers have sa...

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