Just two weeks before the Kyoto talks open in Bali, Indonesia, the world's top scientists have described climate change as "unequivocal".
IPCC issues start warning to governments
Valencia, 17 November 2007. The latest report from the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is a stark warning that
Governments need to take strong action for the climate when they
meet in Bali to negotiate the Kyoto Protocol's second phase in two
weeks' time, Greenpeace said today.
Last night in Valencia, the IPCC approved its Fourth Assessment
Synthesis report, which sums up the key points from the three major
reports published this year on climate change science, its impacts
and the mitigation options. It will be the key reference document
for policymakers in the coming years.
"It is clear from this report that we are gambling with the
future of the planet - and the stakes are high," said Stephanie
Tunmore of Greenpeace International. "This document sets out a
compelling case for early action on climate change. And it must
take centre stage at the Kyoto talks in Bali in December."
She said Governments should be constantly referring back to this
report in their negotiations in Bali. "We expect to see their
personal copies of the Synthesis Report return from Bali, battered
and worn from frequent use, with paragraphs underlined and notes in
The IPCC reports of "unequivocal"climate change already
occurring and warns that man-made global warming could lead to
"abrupt or irreversible" impacts. However, it also confirms that
all greenhouse gas stabilisation levels can be achieved with
currently available technologies or those expected to be
commercialised in the coming decades.
"We have a choice - irreversible impacts - or an Energy
Revolution. Greenpeace believes it is possible to keep the worst
impacts of climate change - the extreme weather events, water
crises and increased hunger - from putting millions of people at
risk. This will take a revolution in the way we use and produce
energy, and a strong commitment to stop deforestation
Late in the evening, as the IPCC was still meeting, crew from
the Greenpeace ship the Arctic Sunrise launched inflatable boats to
protest another coal ship off the Valencia coast as a reminder to
Governments of the cause of the problem. This was on the back of a
similar protest earlier in the week.
Amongst the severe risks the report labels as 'reasons for
- New evidence that the poor and elderly are two groups most at
risk in both rich and poor countries from the impacts of climate
- more hunger, more disease, greater risks from extreme weather
- Major extinctions of plants and animals around the world
- Widespread mass die off of coral reefs, threatening the
livelihoods of millions
- Harder droughts, more intense heatwaves and greatly increase
flood risks are projected for areas of the world already hard hit,
often in the poorest parts of the world.
- Increasing risk of more rapid sea level rise as the Greenland
and Antarctic ice sheets melt from warming, with major risks to
small islands and to the huge, heavily populated mega deltas of
Asia and Africa.