The world’s most authoritative report on climate science was released from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Monday, August 9th. The report compiled by hundreds of scientists at least twice per decade since 1990 concludes that anthropogenic climate change is a “statement of fact” and mentions carbon dioxide removal as a solution.
It also points out that some global warming consequences like sea-level rise are already ‘irreversible’ for centuries to millennia ahead. According to the UN chief, the climate change report “is a code red for humanity” as it warns of extreme heatwaves, droughts, and flooding that has already begun.
One of the most critical projections is that it is likely that global temperatures will rise more than 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels by the early 2030s – up from 1.1 degrees warming currently.
Such a rapid spike in temperatures would produce increasingly devastating consequences for every continent. The forecast is also a decade sooner than the timeline projections made in the 2013 IPCC climate report.
It still gives some glimpse of hope claiming immediate and sustained reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases could quickly improve air quality. As a result of strong measures being taken right now, in 20 to 30 years global temperatures could stabilize.
Carbon Dioxide Removal Role
Significantly scaling up the use of carbon dioxide removal (CDR) technologies has long been on the table for reducing accumulated emissions. The report says that “CDR has the potential to remove CO2 from the atmosphere and durably store it in reservoirs.”
That is necessary to keep global temperature as low as possible as every fraction of a degree makes a significant difference in climate impact.
The IPCC report is a wake-up call for humanity – one of many recently that has proven the urgency of more rapid climate change actions. However, Europe keeps expanding natural gas as a reliable source of energy, neglecting cleaner options like nuclear.
The developing world demands pretty much the cheapest, most available energy source including coal. All that shows a lack of political will for changing the status quo or curbing economic development for the sake of addressing climate change.