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IPCC report describes catastrophe for planet as climate-related threats mount

IPCC report describes catastrophe for planet as climate-related threats mount

IPCC report details catastrophe for planet as threats from climate change mount

Boromo, Burkina Faso: A man tends his mango tree. CIFOR/Ollivier Girard

Many natural landscapes are reaching the point of no returns, and without action on climate changes, the planet will be unlivable.

The Latest major reportThe Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, (IPCC), presents a stark vision about the future if global warming is not controlled.

“Climate change is upon us,” said Robert Nasi, managing director of the Center for International Forestry Research and World Agroforestry. “This is not a risk anymore, but a reality and mitigation won’t suffice. The message is clear — we must now place our focus on putting adaptation plans in place to protect ecosystems and the most vulnerable communities.”

Climate-related threats to species and ecosystems – including forests and agroforestry landscapes – particularly in areas of concentrated biodiversity, present a global risk that grows with every tenth of a degree increase of warming.

The report warns that global action is needed urgently to ensure resilience and that greenhouse gas emissions do NOT decline rapidly. This is especially true if global warming exceeds 1.5 degrees Celsius.

It is possible to adapt to changing climate conditions. However, global warming exceeding 1.5 degrees Celsius will pose a threat to many natural and human systems. Some of these systems will not be able to reverse. The report warns that food crops will not be able to grow in many regions if temperatures rise to 2 degrees Celsius.

“Global emissions are set to increase almost 14 percent over the current decade,” said U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres at the launch. “That spells catastrophe. It will destroy any chance of keeping 1.5 alive.”

The missing ingredient Paris Agreement mitigation strategy to limit post-industrial warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius and limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius is due in large measure to unchecked planet-warming carbon emissions, which have continued to spiral upward.

The agreement was first forged in 2015 at U.N climate talks. It was the topic of intense discussion by leaders at COP26 Glasgow in November. pact to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030.

1.5 must be achieved. To do this, emissions must be reduced by 45 per cent by 2030. Net zero emissions must also be achieved by 2050. But, according to Guterres, global emissions are likely to increase by almost 14 percent over the current decade.

Zoonotic diseases and other diseases can increase the risk of deadly diseases like SARS, MERS, and SARS-CoV-2. As the rate of reproduction, distribution, and spread of weeds and insect pests, disease vectors, and pathogens changes, so will the pressure on crops, forests, and livestock.

The report states that adaptation strategies and mitigation strategies can increase climate resilience. However their success depends on socially inclusive actions by governments, civil society, and the private sector to prioritize equity, justice, risk reduction, and equity.

Global warming poses risks to unique ecosystems due to global tree mortality and permanent damage from heatwaves to other ecosystems.

Climate change caused by humans has already led to species loss, extinctions, increased rates of disease and mass deaths of animals and plants. It has also caused more destruction and deforestation as well as increased intensity and number of wildfires, which has resulted in a doubled fire area.

Wildfires are responsible for up to a quarter of global ecosystem carbon dioxide emissions. The risk of wildfires rises with global temperatures.

According to the report, some areas have been transformed from carbon-sinks into carbon sources by deforestation, burning and draining of tropical forests and peatlands, and thawing Arctic permafrost.

Woody plant expansion into grasslands, savannas and grasslands, which is linked to higher carbon dioxide levels has reduced grazing land available for livestock. However, invasive grasses found in semi-arid areas have increased the risk that fire will occur. Coastal “blue carbon” systems are also changing, the report says.

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A sign announces "Heat kills!" and advises hikers of steps to take to avoid being affected by the extreme heat.

Natural disasters such a drought, heatwave, or flood can reduce food availability and raise food prices, which can impact the health, nutrition, and livelihoods of millions. Extreme events can lead to severe economic losses in the productivity of forests, crops, and livestock farming.

Expanding the natural habitats footprint and reducing deforestation can help conserve biodiversity. Nature-based solutions, which include science, Indigenous, and local knowledge, can also lead to ecosystem-based adaptation.

Adaptation can be achieved in both natural and managed ecosystems through earlier planting and changes in crop varieties, as well as the introduction of heat- and drought-adapted genotypes.

According to the report, soil improvement and water management for livestock and crops, aquaculture, restoration and hydrological processes, increased agroecological agriculture, agroforestry, and managed relocations of high-risk species can all help increase resilience, productivity, sustainability of both natural systems and food systems.

However, adaptation will become more difficult as global warming continues to increase.

“Adaptation saves lives,” Guterres said. “Delay means death.”

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