IPCC report lays bare catastrophic scale of climate crisis22 March 2023
IPCC Synthesis Report lays bare the catastrophic scale of the climate crisis and the consequences – both now and in the future – should the 1.5-degree target not be kept alive.
Responding to the IPCC AR6 Synthesis Report, Jessica Cooke, Climate Change Policy and Advocacy Advisor for Plan International said:
“The IPCC AR6 Synthesis Report lays bare the catastrophic scale of the climate crisis and the consequences – both now and in the future – should the 1.5-degree target not be kept alive. It makes for scary reading, and it is important to remember that children today will be left to face these terrifying impacts should governments not take urgent action to reduce emissions. This should include, among others, transitioning rapidly to renewable energy sources like solar and wind and divesting from fossil fuel infrastructure.
Urgent action required
“Despite the dire conclusions, it is imperative that governments provide climate finance and respond with urgency to keep hope alive for a safe future for children and future generations. The report, based on scientific consensus and agreed by governments, identifies increasing weather and climate extreme events as exposing millions of people to acute food insecurity, frequency and intensity of disasters, and increased exposure to health risks that Plan International is currently responding to. The report outlines how the climate crisis is projected to experience increased weather hazards, including cascading heatwaves and droughts. It also highlighted the limits to adaptation and resilience building, projecting the scale of losses and damages, even with effective adaptation, and calls to attention that some communities and ecosystems have already reached hard adaptation limits.
“Therefore, it is vital governments fulfil the historic decision at COP27 to create a new fund to support communities affected by climate-induced loss and damage and to meet the global commitments to climate finance. According to the IPCC, lower income countries will require $127 billion per year by 2030 and $295 billion per year by 2050 to adapt to climate change. Yet funding for adaptation was between $23 billion to $46 billion from 2017 to 2018 – less than 8% of what is needed.
Governments must increase funding to reduce impacts of climate crisis
“Governments should focus on increasing adaptation funding which is predicted to significantly reduce the impacts of the climate crisis on communities and individuals. It is also vital, as highlighted in the report, to invest in education, including capacity building, climate literacy, and access to information as a key approach to risk awareness and behavioural change.
“Children will be hit hardest by the climate crisis yet have contributed the least. Girls are also disproportionately affected by climate impacts due to discriminatory gender norms, often being removed from school or susceptible to child marriage, further limiting their adaptive capacities. The Report highlights the need for equity, inclusivity and rights-based approaches to adaptation. This is vital to support and advance intergenerational, gender and climate justice.”