2. We’re on the path to exceeding 1.5C of warming
In 2015, the nations behind the Paris Agreement set an ambitious target for keeping global warming below 1.5C. The latest IPCC report spells out just how difficult it will be for the world to stay under that limit, unless we drastically slash emissions in the very near future. The report models five different future emission scenarios – from very high emissions to very low emissions – and in each scenario global surfaces are expected to hit at least 1.5C.
Of the emissions scenarios modelled, only the very low emission scenario estimated that the world would see less than 1.5C of warming by the end of the twenty-first century. In that scenario, temperatures are likely to overshoot 1.5C of warming between 2041 and 2060, before returning back down to 1.4C of warming by the end of the century. This scenario would require the world to dramatically reduce its emissions with almost immediate effect. Based on current emissions, the world is likely to hit between 2.7C and 3.1C of warming by 2100.
In May 2016, to make visualizing climate change easier for the general public, University of Reading climate scientist Ed Hawkins created an animated spiral graphic of global temperature change as a function of time, a representation said to have gone viral. Jason Samenow wrote in The Washington Post that the spiral graph was “the most compelling global warming visualization ever made”, before it was featured in the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Olympics.
There are no reviews yet.