Climate Change: UN Report Predicts Grave Consequences

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In a landmark report, scientists say the evidence of global warming is now overwhelming and the impact is “irreversible”. Flooding, droughts, heatwaves and wildfires will pose a massive threat to humans in the future as climate change worsens, a major United Nations report has warned.

The report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said the impact of global warming was already being felt and would increase with every additional degree that temperatures rose.

The world is in “an era of man-made climate change” and has already seen impacts of global warming on every continent and across the oceans, the report said.

IPCC chair Rajendra Pachauri said: “Nobody on this planet is going to be untouched by the impacts of climate change.”

Experts are warning that in many cases, people are ill-prepared to cope with the risks of a changing climate.

The document, unveiled in Yokohama in Japan after a five-day meeting, gives the starkest warning yet by the IPCC of extreme consequences from climate change, and delves into greater detail than ever before into the impact at regional level.

The White House said it is taking the report as a call for action, with Secretary of State John Kerry saying: “Waiting is truly unaffordable. The costs of inaction are catastrophic.”

Food security will be hit by reduced yields in wheat, rice and maize crops, while climate change will also exacerbate existing health problems, and lead to more heatwave-related deaths, malnutrition and disease, the report said.

Increasing numbers of people are set to be displaced by extreme weather events, and the impacts of rising temperatures could contribute to a greater risk of violent conflicts by worsening problems such as poverty.

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