A new study undertaken by the world’s leading climate scientists says that allowing global warming to exceed 1.5 degree Celsius would greatly impact our planet’s livability. What’s alarming is that this 1.5 degree Celsius temperature ‘guard rail’ could be exceeded in just 12 years, in 2030.
The report warned that if global temperatures rose even half a degree beyond that, it will significantly worsen the risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and poverty for hundreds of millions of people.
The authors of the landmark report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released on Monday say urgent and unprecedented changes are needed to reach the target, which they say is affordable and feasible although it lies at the most ambitious end of the Paris Agreement pledge to keep temperatures between 1.5 and 2 degree Celsius.
The world is currently 1 degree Celsius warmer than preindustrial levels. Following devastating hurricanes in the US, record droughts in Cape Town and forest fires in the Arctic, the IPCC makes clear that climate change is already happening, upgraded its risk warning from previous reports, and warned that every fraction of additional warming would worsen the impact.