Draft IPCC report urges timely climate mitigation action

2014-09-29 09:05 by Anja Reitz

The 5th Assessment Report of the IPCC stated that without CO2 capture and storage (CCS) the costs of mitigation would more than double. The leaked report is a compilation of hundreds of papers aiming to present the best scientific and economic analysis to government leaders and policymakers worldwide. Moreover, it will guide the climate negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and will be crucial in the conclusion of a global climate agreement at the 21st Conference of the Parties (COP) in Paris in December 2015.

The report, leaked in the run up to the United Nations Climate Summit in New York starting tomorrow, warns that an increase in global mean surface temperature to 2.5 ̊C above pre-industrial levels may result in economic losses amounting to 2% of global GDP. It also notes that there are costs associated with keeping temperature rise below 2 ̊C, the recommended target to avoid irreversible change climate. These could include a reduction in global consumption of 1.7% in 2030, 3.4% in 2050 and 4.8% in 2100, estimates the report.

While the report notes that mitigation technologies to keep temperatures within the acceptable target exist, it also notes that “substantial technological, economic, social, and institutional challenges” remain. Even though undertaking mitigation action may entail risks, delayed mitigation or inaction with regards to climate change will have irreversible impacts. The report estimates that delaying mitigation action until 2030 could raise costs by 44% through to 2050. Inflating the costs of mitigation will inevitably lead to conflicts for resource allocation with respect to healthcare, education and biodiversity. In simple terms, the more expensive climate change abatement is, the higher the risk of inaction and failure.


Source: Bellona, 22 Sep 2014

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