• China’s emissions glimpsing the peak

    China recently announced its intention to peak its carbon-dioxide emissions. How soon could the emissions peak and at what absolute value? Libo Wu explores.
  • The greening of the Southern Hemisphere

    The 2010-2011 La Niña weather event brought lush vegetation to vast semi-arid regions in the Southern Hemisphere and altered the delicate balance of the global carbon sinks. Owen Gaffney explores how La Niña might change in the future and what that might imply.
Published: November 19, 2013

Climate change: the state of the science

A new data visualization released on the first day of the plenary negotiations at the UNFCCC’s climate negotiations (COP-19) in Warsaw articulates climate risks and the challenge of remaining below 2 degrees.

Produced by the International Geosphere-Biosphere Programme and Globaia, and funded by the UN Foundation, the 3-minute film uses stunning visuals to unravel exactly what the IPCC’s climate probability ranges mean for societies. It concludes that if the world wants a “likely” chance (66-100%) of remaining within the 2 degree Celsius target set by international policymakers, then we can only emit around 250 billion tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere. Given emissions are currently around 10 billion tonnes a year and rising, this give societies about 25 years.

Large emissions cuts will increase the chances of remaining below two degrees, and extend the time before breaching this budget.

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