Early Rumours of the Next IPCC Report on Climate Change

Fri, 2006-03-10 09:07Richard Littlemore
Richard Littlemore's picture

Early Rumours of the Next IPCC Report on Climate Change

The BBC reports that the next official report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will abandon the conditional language of previous editions.

“A source told the BBC: 'The measurements from the natural world on all parts of the globe have been anomalous over the past decade.

“'If a few were out of kilter we wouldn't be too worried, because the Earth changes naturally. But the fact that they are virtually all out of kilter makes us very concerned.'

He said the report would forecast that a doubling of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere would bring a temperature rise of 2-4.5C, or maybe higher.

This is an increase on projections in the last IPCC report, which suggested that the rise could be as little as 1.5C.

Comments

Predictions are supposed to have three basic scenarios:
- worst case
- most likely
- least possible

All the climate change prediction models so far have ended up SHORT of what actually is happening. I especially point to the melting of the Arctic Sea Ice, where it has melted much more than the “worst case scenarios” have predicted.That is not supposed to happen, and if it does then all the modelling has to be re-constructed upwards.

So when will the IPCC put out a truly “worst case”? Sure, they don’t want to scare people, but thats why there is a “most likely” category - scared people can look at that and ignore the worst case!!

What are some worst case scenarios? Would they include such items as:
10oC global avg. temperature rise by 2020 ;
By 2015 all the sea ice could be gone by June each year [polar bears would be wiped out] ;
Oceans will rise 10 meters by 2020 ;
Drought and heat-stress will kill all crops worldwide;
The boreal forest will burn down by 2015 [but that will take care of the Pine Beetles!]

Those are obviously just “off the cuff”, but shouldn’t we have an inkling of what MIGHT happen if we fail to reduce, or even stabilise, our emissions?