Verden har en frist frem til 2015 – 7 år – før klimaendringene slår inn for fullt. Selv om alle utslipp ble slått av umiddelbart, og alle biler ble parkert, vil havnivået stige over én meter, sier FNs klimapanel i en sluttrapport.
As early as 2020, 75 million to 250 million people in Africa will suffer water shortages, residents of Asia’s large cities will be at great risk of river and coastal flooding, according to the report.
Europeans can expect extensive species loss, and North Americans will experience longer and hotter heat waves and greater competition for water, says the report from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the Nobel Prize with Al Gore this year.
The panel portrays the Earth hurtling toward a warmer climate at a quickening pace and warns of inevitable human suffering. It says emissions of carbon, mainly from fossil fuels, must stabilize by 2015 and go down after that.
In the best-case scenario, temperatures will keep rising from carbon already in the atmosphere, the report said. Even if factories were shut down today and cars taken off the roads, the average sea level will reach as high as 4.6 feet above that in the preindustrial period, or about 1850.
«We have already committed the world to sea level rise,» the panel’s chairman, Rajendra Pachauri, said. But if the Greenland ice sheet melts, the scientists said, they could not predict by how many feet the seas will rise, drowning coastal cities.