A race against time and against ourselves. Against the dangerous idea that we can’t do this, that there is no way.
Unlike most races, it won’t have one winner. In this race we all win, or we all lose. Winning it requires a radical, unprecedented level of collaboration, from all corners of our world. From our cities, businesses, regions and investors. From people everywhere.
Together we’re racing for a better world. A zero carbon and resilient world. A healthier, safer, fairer world. A world of wellbeing, abundance and joy, where the air is fresher, our jobs are well-paid and dignified, and our future is clear.
To get there we need to run fast, and get faster. We need more and more people to join the race, and right now. This is not about 2050, it’s about today.
Together, we can do this. And we’re already on our way.
5 key points in the IPCC report on climate change impacts and adaptation
By Lisa Schipper, University of Oxford; Vanesa Castán Broto, University of Sheffield, and Winston Chow, Singapore Management University | March 4, 2022
The latest report from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) looks at the impacts, adaptation and vulnerabilities associated with the climate crisis, and we are three of the 270 scientists and researchers who wrote it. The document reports stark new findings on the way current global warming of 1.1℃ is impacting natural and human systems, and on how our ability to respond will be increasingly limited with every additional increment of warming.
Here are five key points in the new report:
1. Risks will be magnified if warming is unchecked
Since the previous IPCC report on impacts and adaptation back in 2014, heatwaves, droughts, wildfires and other extremes have increased in frequency and intensity far beyond natural variability. These hazards have substantially damaged ecosystems across the globe, and in some cases led to irreversible losses such as species extinction. Humans are also hit too, through heightened food and water insecurities, greater incidences of food-, water- and vector-borne diseases, and worse physical and mental health.
If global warming is left unchecked, these climate hazards will unavoidably increase. Every increment of global temperature rise magnifies the resulting loss and damage.
2. Adaptation is hitting limits
The report says that much of the world’s current climate adaptation measures are not necessarily effective. In fact, there are both “hard” and “soft” limits. In natural systems, the hard limits mean that no amount of human intervention (beside reducing greenhouse gas emissions) can make a difference. For example, warm water coral reefs may completely disappear if ocean temperatures continue increasing – you can’t simply “adapt” to that.
5. The window of opportunity is closing, rapidlyThe new report emphasises the need to couple adaptation measures with greenhouse gas emission reductions to enable “climate resilient development”. This will require adequate financing, inclusive governance, transparency in decision making, and the participation of a wide range of people and groups.Yet, the world is on a path to exceed 1.5℃ warming within the next decade. Current development policies which accelerate greenhouse gas emissions actually increase climate maladaptation risks and widen social inequalities.To urgently shift our collective course from 1.5℃ of warming and beyond, the report charts paths for climate-resilient development that policymakers can apply, all of which reduce climate risks while improving lives, especially among those most vulnerable to global warming. Time, however, is running short.Lisa Schipper, Environmental Social Science Reserch Fellow, University of Oxford; Vanesa Castán Broto, Professor of Climate Urbanism, University of Sheffield, and Winston Chow, Associate Professor of Science, Technology and Society, Singapore Management University. This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
Resilience experts and members of Race to Resilience’s MAG advisory group, Anand Patwardhan, Emilie Beauchamp, Ana Maria Lobo-Guerrero, and Paulina Aldunce, underline the transformative impact of the Sharm El Sheikh Adaptation Agenda in driving collaboration and fast-tracking action to bridge the adaptation gap and support the world’s most vulnerable communities.