IPCC Report: Here is the Consensus On Climate Change You've Been Waiting For

The world's leading scientists are 95% confident that humans are majorly responsible for the extreme changes in climate. Sea levels are rising, Greenland and Arctic ice sheets are melting, and our world is getting hotter than ever. On Friday, a panel of climate scientists appointed by the UN indicated that without controlling the emission of greenhouse gases, our climate will drastically worsen.

According to the report, human activity is the reason for at least "half of the observed increase in global average surface temperatures since the 1950s." Carbon concentrations have increased by about 40% since then. Outlandish new levels of carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide in the form of combined gases have increased. The UN IPCC embraced a "carbon budget" that suggested a limit on the amount of carbon dioxide that can be emitted by industrial activities and forest destruction. However, should humanity go beyond this limit, dangerous effects of climate change could ensue, leaving our planet with the highest pronected increases in temperatures. 

The report indicated that particular developed nations, such as the United States and China are the leaders in world pollution. If carbon dioxide emission was limited with steep cuts, it would possibly meet the limit of a 3.6 Fahrenheit temperature increase. This would avoid the worst global warming impacts. The Obama administration, more specifically the Environmental Protection Agency, has recently taken action to curb emissions of future coal and gas-fired power plants. It is the first of restrictions on greenhouse gases imposed by the agency.

Michael Jarraud, head of the World Meteorological Organization, said this report should "serve as yet another wake-up call our activities today have a profound impact on society." U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry agreed with him, stating that "Those who deny the science or choose excuses over action are playing with fire."

And yet there are still critics, such as former television meteorologist Anthony Watts, who deny the report. Watts suggested the report at best as "comical." He said the IPCC model fails to represent reality and says it is a "jump the shark" moment where advocacy speaks louder than the science.

But the report speaks for itself, and is supported with enough evidence to indicate humanity's actions, as well as inactions, will deteriorate our climate if nothing is done. It would be a colossal mistake to delay remedies to such a significant issue. 

The evidence is quite clear of how our day-to-day activities greatly impact not only us, but generations to come. It is too crucial and compelling a case to allow prolonged action. This is a landmark report that is published every six years. Each year a new case is made on how human pollution and emission of green house gases are destroying our climate. A profound emphasis of the challenge humanity continuously faces in trying to limit pollution and global warming is yet again underscored with this new report.

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Keshar Patel

Politics and human rights enthusiast.

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