Helping the most vulnerable people to cope with the climate crisis can boost the global economy during the Covid crisis and governments should make this a priority, said Kristalina Georgieva, head of the International Monetary Fund.
By 2100, billions of people are at risk of facing more flooding, higher temperatures and less food and water. A new study published in “Nature Climate Change” found that the climate change will cause the Earth’s tropical rain belt to unevenly shift in areas that cover almost two-thirds of the world, potentially threatening environmental safety and food security for billions of people.
Scientists have found that 269 airports are at risk of coastal flooding now. A temperature rise of 2C – consistent with the Paris Agreement – would lead to 100 airports being below mean sea level and 364 airports at risk of flooding. If global mean temperature rise exceeds this then as many as 572 airports will be at risk by 2100, leading to major disruptions without appropriate adaptation.
If one wanted a basic rule of thumb for dealing with the climate crisis, it would be: stop burning things. Human beings have made use of combustion for a very long time, ever since the first campfires cooked the first animals for dinner, allowing our brains to get larger. Now those large brains have come to understand that burning stuff is destroying the stable climate on which civilization depends.
“Climate change—to which no one is immune—continues to be a catastrophic risk. Although lockdowns worldwide caused global emissions to fall in the first half of 2020, evidence from the 2008–2009 financial crisis warns that emissions could bounce back,” the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks report 2021 warns. “A shift towards greener economies cannot be delayed until the shocks of the pandemic subside.” Climate action failure is the most impactful and second most likely long-term risk identified in the report.