Durban – 28 November 2011
A civil society analysis of mitigation issues in the Durban talks
It’s a planetary and humanitarian emergency… The world is already reeling from major humanitarian emergencies exacerbated by climate change: floods in Thailand and Pakistan, landslides from extreme rains in many Latin American countries, and the multi-year drought in the Horn of Africa that threatens the lives of millions.
Current levels of warming have already begun triggering major “tipping points” in the Earth’s system – such as Arctic methane releases, Amazon dieback, and the loss of icesheets. 2°C of warming, as proposed by some governments, threatens to tip a cascade of events that will cause warming to spin out of control. We have known since 1986 that warming “beyond 1°C may elicit rapid, unpredictable and non-linear responses that could lead to extensive ecosystem damage”, the effects of which we’re seeing already.
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