The latest report published by the IPCC, which includes all the evaluations carried out so far, has made clear the message that, on the one hand, what we are dealing with the climate problem is insufficient and we have lost valuable years; and, on the other, it is possible to guarantee a livable and sustainable future for all, but it is essential to take action as soon as possible.
The IPCC is the global climate change assessment organization. A summary of the most in-depth evaluations that hundreds of experts have carried out on various subjects in recent years has now been published. The report clearly shows that we continue to increase greenhouse gas emissions. This means that the world temperature is 1.1°C higher than the pre-industrial temperature.
This situation is mainly due to the combustion of fossil fuels. And warming brings with it increasingly serious risks, such as heat waves, heavy rains and other extreme weather phenomena, lack of food and water security, increased risk of a pandemic… The report emphasizes the losses and damage that have already occurred and will occur in the future. And they stress that these changes are particularly detrimental to the most vulnerable people and ecosystems, who are least blamed for climate change.
However, the IPCC considers that not everything is lost and that there is still the possibility of mitigating the effects of the weather emergency. According to the report, there are sufficient resources and capital in the world to immediately reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This implies changes in the food, energy, transport, industry, building and land use sectors. Political commitment, coordinated policies and international cooperation are essential.
In addition, these changes would promote the improvement of health and well-being. And it would be economically profitable, according to IPCC estimates. For example, the economic benefit derived from the effect on health of only improving air quality would be equal to or greater than the investment needed to reduce emissions.
The IPCC will not issue any other reports until 2030. We will then know to what extent the work done so far has been taken into account.