What is the IPCC?

published Nov 13, 2014
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Climate Change and IPCC


In the past days, a lot has been said about the IPCC. But what exactly do these letters stand for? IPCC stands for Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The IPCC is the United Nations body in charge of assessing and gathering evidence on climate change. It is an intergovernmental body, with 195 member governments, that started in 1988 as a body under the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

The IPCC releases periodic Assessment Reports (every 5 to 7 years) with authoritative and up-to-date information about what is being done regarding climate change. The reports are the result of the contributions of thousand scientists, economists and policy experts that collaborate with IPCC on a voluntary basis. The purpose of IPCC is not to create new research. Instead, it uses authoritative information and reports that exist already in the public domain.

The Assessment Reports describe the state of climate change action in terms of climate science, economic issues relative to climate change, and policies also related to this issue. The latest Assessment Report is called AR5, (as it is the fifth of its kind) and has been released in November 2014.

One of the conclusions of the AR5 is that continued emission of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and long-lasting changes. This will lead to extreme irreversible impacts on people and ecosystems. Moreover, in order to tackle climate change we need to achieve zero emissions of CO2 and other dangerous greenhouse gases by the end of the century.

You can watch the trailer of AR5 here: