Jonathan Leake at the London Times reports on the conclusions drawn from scientists working with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:
Scientists say rising greenhouses gases will make climate change unstoppable in a decadeAnd, let's see, rising sea levels will bring the Elizabeth River to my doorstep. I wonder it it would be covered by flood insurance?
THE world has just 10 years to reverse surging greenhouse gas emissions or risk runaway climate change that could make many parts of the planet uninhabitable.
The stark warning comes from scientists who are working on the final draft of a new report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The report, due to be published this week, will draw together the work of thousands of scientists from around the world who have been studying changes in the world’s climate and predicting how they might accelerate.
They conclude that unless mankind rapidly stabilises greenhouse gas emissions and starts reducing them, it will have little chance of keeping global warming within manageable limits.
The results could include the destruction of the Amazon rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef, the forced migration of hundreds of millions of people from equatorial regions, and the loss of vast tracts of land under rising seas as the ice caps melt.
In Europe the summers could become unbearably hot, especially in southern countries such as Greece, Spain and Italy, while Britain and northern Europe would face summer droughts and wet, stormy winters.
Now, here's my serious question: If we choose to not believe the science, and it turns out that it's right, what sort of a world will be be living in? And, if we do make changes now, and are successful, will we really know we were right? And which is better: to be right and not know it, or to be wrong and know it?