Approval of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group II report on Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability in a virtual session (14-25 Feb).

  • Press conference (virtual) at 10:00 a.m. CET (Berlin) on Monday, 28 February 2022 – 04.00 EDT (New York), 09:00 GMT (London), 12:00 EAT (Nairobi), 16:00 ICT (Bangkok)
  • Information about media registration is available here. The deadline for registration is Friday, 18 February 2022.

Geneva, Switzerland –  Recent large-scale climatic changes are of unprecedented nature in the context of all human history, found the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Working Group I report in August. [1] With record levels of greenhouse gases and associated heat, we have now entered uncharted territory, the world’s top climate scientists have warned.

But next month we will be reminded that this is only the beginning, as the IPCC finalises and releases the next part of their 6th Assessment Report. The Working Group II report, scheduled for publication on 28 February after a virtual approval session, will summarise the latest scientific understanding on impacts, adaptation and vulnerability, outlining how climatic hazards and risks will increase with warming, with considerations of sustainable development, aspects of justice and equity, and the action needed to take to build resilience.

Since their previous assessment in 2014, the situation has, in many ways, become worse. Earlier this month, NOAA warned the years 2013-2021 all rank among the ten-warmest years on record.

“The reality of the climate crisis has become more personal and political than ever, while the reality of inequities has become more blatant too. The majority of the Global North received COVID-19 boosters last year, yet only around 8 percent of people on the African continent got fully vaccinated against COVID-19. In this time of multiple and ongoing crises, which interact with and accelerate one another and the injustices they bring, it is incredibly valuable to have the world’s scientific community coming together to assess the situation we are in, and how these interconnected challenges can be fought.

We expect the report to show the extent to which warming has increased climatic hazards, and how limits to adaptation are already being reached, which disproportionately impacts communities in already vulnerable situations who are also the least responsible for the crisis. Hard facts presented in the report will make the lack of action and commitment from high-emitters more evident, and the calls for justice even stronger.

As we’ve already experienced, the interlinked system we live in will spare no one. Climate impacts are already being felt around the world. To avoid the worst, we need urgent emission cuts and climate justice. We need investments in adaptation, building equity, compensating for and insuring against losses and damages and fostering resilient development pathways where everyone can participate. None of this will happen unless high-emitters curb their emissions in line with the science. Otherwise, they can expect that they will be obliged to very soon and I expect the IPCC to make the realities of those in the most vulnerable situations impossible to ignore.”  said Kaisa Kosonen, Climate Expert, Greenpeace Nordic.         

The authoritative report will add pressure to address the issues that underpin the discussion around finance, adaptation and loss and damage: equity and climate justice. Action in line with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C warming limit is fundamental to get us through the interconnected crises. These issues, of particular importance to already impacted communities, are likely to frame the narrative towards COP 27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt later this year.

The report is expected to address, among other things: 

  • How warming is already impacting us and the world we live in, including ecosystems and their services, with current and committed levels of warming and sea-level rise.
  • How climate impacts and risks will increase with further warming, and how different development pathways exacerbate or mitigate those risks.
  • How and to what extent impacts and risks can be managed and reduced, acknowledging limits to adaptation, and the loss and damage that occurs beyond those limits.
  • Who are particularly vulnerable to climate impacts and risks and why, and how those vulnerabilities can be reduced and resilience built.
  • Solution frameworks with a specific focus on climate resilient development pathways. 
  • The role of social justice, equity and different forms of expertise in climate-resilient development, with broadened attention given to aspects of climate justice. 
  • The particular situation of coastal communities; cities and settlements by the sea.

Working Group II report will be followed by another IPCC report in April, Working Group III contribution to the 6th Assessment Report, that will assess ways to mitigate climate change. A synthesis report (SYR) of the work done by Working Groups I, II and III and the previous Special Reports will be published in October. It will provide an overview of the state of knowledge on the science of climate change since AR5 and frame government deliberations on how to “revisit and strengthen” their 2030 climate targets by the end of 2022, deliver on climate finance and consider ways to address loss and damage.

Greenpeace is an official observer to the IPCC and will be attending the virtual approval meeting of the WG2 report. Experts are available for comment.

The approval meeting will start with an opening ceremony at 10:00 a.m. (CET) on Monday, 14 February 2022. The hour-long opening ceremony will be streamed live and include addresses by the IPCC Chair, senior officials from the United Nations Environment Programme, the World Meteorological Organisation and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The opening ceremony is open to all. The rest of the approval meeting (14-25 Feb 2022) will be closed to the public and media.

[1] Climate Change 2021: The Physical Science Basis, the Working Group I contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report. See Chapter 1 on context and framing.

For more information:

Official IPCC media advisory and registration page for the Working Group 2 report launch

Approved outline of the Working Group II contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report

The list of authors of the report can be found here.

Official IPCC fact sheet of the 6th Assessment Report (Note that the approval dates in the briefing are outdated.)

Images: Images and videos of climate change impacts are available from the Greenpeace Media Library.


Gaby Flores, Communications Coordinator, Greenpeace International, [email protected], +1 214 454 3871 (Working from New York, New York)

Greenpeace International Press Desk, [email protected], +31 20 718 2470 (24 hours)

Note: This post was edited slightly on 11 February