It is eagerly awaited around the world: the latest edition of the IPCC climate report. This report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is published every six to eight years and provides the latest update on climate change.
The United Nations Climate Change Expert Group has compiled, assessed and summarized all the scientific knowledge on climate in recent years. The summary of this detailed IPCC report is considered the basis for future climate agreements aimed at reducing global warming.
Global vision of climate change
The report, which will be released tomorrow, contains no new findings on the climate. Scientists in the group reviewed 14,000 international climate studies. These have been assessed and analyzed to arrive at a comprehensive picture of the current state of the climate system around the world.
A special summary of about 25 pages was written on the voluminous report, the so-called summary for policymakers. Delegations from 130 countries considered this summary sentence by sentence. What will soon be on the table has therefore been accepted and approved by scientists and policy makers in many governments. And this is important because we are close to a world political summit on climate, which will be held in Glasgow in the fall.
The state of global warming, as recorded in the IPCC report, has also been used in the past as an important basis for new climate agreements, as in the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement. .
Importance for the Netherlands
For the Netherlands, this IPCC report will mainly concern the latest information on sea level rise, says Dutch delegation leader Rob van Dorland. The big question for our country is how quickly the ice in Antarctica will melt. There are a lot of uncertainties about this and the new IPCC report will discuss it in detail, he believes.
Aimée Slangen, sea level researcher and co-author, also expects the report to provide more concrete figures on the expected sea level rise. She also says that the ice melt at the pole South, in particular, is crucial for the Netherlands. We already understand better how this works than with the previous IPCC report from 2013, says Slangen.
This also applies to extreme weather conditions, such as heavy rainfall and its influence on the Netherlands, explains Van Dorland, himself a climate researcher at KNMI. Since the last climate panel report, many more observations have become available. Satellites in particular allow us to zoom in more precisely on the entire climate system. With those observations, you can also better understand the whole system, he says.
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