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Scientist warning over climate change and global warming - CBBC Newsround

10 October 2018

Another recent report from the consulting firm PwC makes it clear that even limiting warming to 2 degrees C will be a stretch: "There seems to be nearly zero chance of limiting warming to well below two degrees (the main goal of the Paris Agreement), though widespread use of carbon capture and storage technologies, including Natural Climate Solutions, may make this possible", it says.

The 2015 Paris Agreement - which applies to Hong Kong - highlighted the need to limit the rise in average temperatures to 2 degrees over the century from pre-industrial levels to stave off the worst and irreversible effects of climate change, while "pursuing efforts" to achieve 1.5 degrees.

A new United Nations report warns that much of the world will be screwed by the year 2040 unless we basically reduce carbon emissions to zero.

It is thought that by 2100, global sea rise levels would be 10cm lower that if global warming were to be at 2C.

Greenhouse pollution must be reduced by 45 per cent from 2010 levels by 2030 and 100 per cent by 2050. "Even the scientists were surprised to see how much science was already there and how much they could really differentiate and how great are the benefits of limiting global warming at 1.5 compared to 2", Thelma Krug, vice-chair of the IPCC, told Reuters in an interview. "I want the plan to succeed but the plan is not ambitious enough and right now we're seeing that it's going nowhere". This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing Carbon dioxide from the air.

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"Did you know that 30 per cent of all food consumed by the [Australian] household goes to food waste?" she said. Limiting global warming to less than 2ºC will hopefully allow ecosystems and animals to adapt to the gradually rising temperatures.

The next major climate discussions are scheduled in December in Katowice, Poland where countries are expected to discuss rules to implement the Paris agreement.

Johnny Chan Chung-leung, director of City University's Guy Carpenter Asia-Pacific Climate Impact Centre, said laws - rather than targets - that mandated a certain ratio of renewables in the power mix by a certain date were also necessary. Greenhouse gas includes waste gas like carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels.

Delaying action on climate change "is something that is explicitly contradicted in the report", he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Although he didn't specify which reports he was referring to, he has often cited research by the conservative-leaning Heritage Foundation when trying to make the case that cutting carbon emissions would have little effect on global temperatures.

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"There were doubts if we would be able to differentiate impacts set at 1.5°C and that came so clearly". We can't find any historical analogies for it.

IPCC released the report, "Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5ºC", on Monday, outlining the urgent need for governments to act, quickly, to avoid worldwide catastrophe as a result of global warming. "Small island states, Mediterranean region and also Sub-Saharan Africa, which are already suffering and will suffer the most in the future".

"Urban systems that are moving towards transformation are coupling solar and wind with battery storage and electric vehicles in a more incremental transition, though this would still require changes in regulations, tax incentives, new standards, demonstration projects and education programs to enable markets for this system to work", the IPCC report said.

"Many parts of the world will see mean temperature increases that, in time, will be higher than 1.5°C, including the South West of Western Australia", Dr Kala said. And, we have certain areas in the world, which are extremely sensitive.

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Scientist warning over climate change and global warming - CBBC Newsround