Extreme weather in focus as UN climate change panel meets

Climate Action In Africa
Climate Action In Africa

Recent floods in places like China and Germany, as well as other notable extreme weather events dominated the start of the meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on Monday.

Speakers noted the tragedies and made a call: The world, galvanized by the events, must act urgently to mitigate climate change.

On August 9, the first part of the Sixth Assessment Report on climate change is due to be published.

For example, “a better understanding of the attribution of extreme weather to climate change” is to be expected, said IPCC chairperson Hoesung Lee.

The contents of the report are still top secret. Government officials are going through the science submissions, which have been compiled during the past three years, until the end of next week.

They have to approve the publication. The meeting will be behind closed doors.

The world is waiting to hear what the IPCC has to say, Lee said. Regional climate change predictions are also expected to play a major role.

The new report is an important template for the World Climate Conference in Glasgow in November, said Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

Even more ambitious climate change targets are needed than governments have planned so far, he said.

“It is important that we start the mitigation action as soon as possible. We cannot wait for decades,” Taalas said.

He said it is positive that more and more countries and industries are committing to climate protection and that the private sector is promoting climate-friendly investments.

Further parts of the Sixth Assessment Report are scheduled to be released in 2022. The fifth report was published in 2013-14.

The IPCC does not conduct its own research. It commissions scientists to review and evaluate studies on all aspects of climate change. More than 230 experts are involved in the new report.

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