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Environment

Climate Change Is Altering The World

IPCC: Report probes impacts, adaptation, and vulnerabilities related to global warming

by Cheryl Hogue
March 31, 2014

Around the globe, human-caused climate change has affected farming, water supplies, and ecosystems on land and in water, says a new United Nations report.

Compiled by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the report says melting of permafrost and many glaciers as well as a shift in many species’ geographic ranges is a result of global warming. Climate change thus far has caused more harm than good to crops, it concludes. And the current rate of ocean acidification, caused by uptake of atmospheric carbon dioxide, is unprecedented in the past 65 million years.

The report, released today, examines the impacts of global warming and societies’ vulnerability to those effects. The document also assesses how societies are adapting to climate change.

“With high levels of warming that result from continued growth in greenhouse gas emissions, risks will be challenging to manage,” says Christopher Field, who cochaired the IPCC working group that prepared the report. “Even serious, sustained investments in adaptation will face limits,” says Field, founding director of the Carnegie Institution’s Department of Global Ecology at Stanford University.

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), who chairs the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee, says the IPCC report “adds a tremendous sense of urgency for Congress to wake up and do everything in its power to reduce dangerous carbon pollution.”

The report also touches briefly on geoengineering—which would involve large-scale efforts to block incoming solar radiation or to strip carbon dioxide from the atmosphere—but does not endorse it. Costs, effectiveness, and side effects of geoengineering techniques are poorly understood, the document says.

The report is the second in a series of three that IPCC is releasing as part of its fifth in-depth assessment of climate change since 1990. The first of these, examining the science of climate change, was released in September 2013. The third report, on mitigating climate change, is due in mid April.

The IPCC reports are expected to influence international negotiations on a new climate change treaty, which are scheduled to conclude at the end of 2015.

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Comments
Albertus Magnus (March 31, 2014 5:55 PM)
Take a look at the data. This is science, right?

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-24173504

There has been no significant global warming for nearly two decades.

It's a poor reflection on the chemistry community that so many fall for propaganda. You would think in a data driven science that one might reflect and do their research for themselves and look at the data (not the model) and come to their own conclusions.

It's not surprising, however, given the state of academic integrity when it comes to publishing in the major ACS journals and elsewhere. There is so much that belongs in the Journal of Irreproducible Results. Take a look at crystal and NMR structures of proteins, for example. http://web.mit.edu/pmueller/www/own_papers/suggestions.pdf

I have not come across a single synthetic chemist who hasn't complained that their colleagues who publish some methodology that s/he can't reproduce after months of attempts and correspondence.

We, as scientists, used to stand on the shoulders of giants. Turns out the modern giants are made of paper mache.

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