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The war against climate change also demands political urgency

The consequences and impact of climate change are greater than previously thought, the UN climate panel says in its new report. Poor countries suffer the most, but also for Europe too

By: N. Peter Kramer - Posted: Wednesday, March 2, 2022

"It is clear. The situation demands more political urgency. Our planet is in danger".
"It is clear. The situation demands more political urgency. Our planet is in danger".

N. Peter Kramer’s Weekly Column

The consequences and impact of climate change are greater than previously thought, the UN climate panel says in its new report. Poor countries suffer the most, but also for Europe too. Forest fires and floods should be a wake-up call.

The report from the IPCC, the UN’s climate science panel, shows CO2 emissions have continued to rise all along and the earth will most likely be 1,5 degrees Celsius warmer in the next twenty years than it was before the industrial age. ‘The magnitude of the impacts of climate change are greater than estimated by previous assessments’, the IPCC said. As a result, both food and water supplies are under pressure, making it increasingly difficult to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals!

According to the IPCC, it is also becoming increasingly clear how the most vulnerable (and poorest) people and ecosystems are being hit ‘disproportionately’, in the first place the African Sub-Saharan or South-East Asia. The report clearly shows that ‘more equal societies are better equipped against climate change, while climate change is actually leading to more unequal societies. That’s how you get into a vicious circle’, according to Prof. Francois Gemenne, co-author of the report.

The fact that the poorest are particularly affected does not mean Europe will be spared’, continues Gemenne. ‘Our regions are also vulnerable. Extreme weather events, such as the floods in Belgium last summer or the fires in Greece, have become more likely due to climate change.’ Such extremes should therefore be ‘a wake-up call’, he warns.

‘The IPCC is once again focusing on what we actually know’, says climate expert Wendel Trio. ‘But progress in scientific knowledge contrasts with what is happening at political level’. ‘The greenhouse gas emissions are flirting with record highs and the peak does not seem to have been reached yet’, he continues.

It is clear. The situation demands more political urgency. Our planet is in danger.

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