Landmark Climate Change Report Draws on UNU-IAS Expertise

  • 2018•10•10     Tokyo

    IPCC Special Report Chapter 3 Working Group

    On 8 October, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its highly anticipated Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C, on which UNU-IAS Academic Programme Officer Riyanti Djalante served as a lead author. The report noted the necessity of “rapid, far-reaching, and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society” in order to secure the 1.5 °C limit and cautioned that the consequences failing to maintain it would affect hundreds of millions of people worldwide. The report presented scientific evidence of clear environmental benefits of limiting global warming by even half a degree (1.5 degrees versus 2 degrees), with considerable preventive effects against further global sea rise, melting of arctic sea-ice, and destruction of coral reefs.

    Dr. Djalante contributed to Chapter 3 of the report, which addresses the effects of climate change on natural and human systems, specifically on livelihoods and poverty and the changing structure of communities. This section of the report finds that climate-related risks to health, livelihoods, food security, water supply, human security, and economic growth are projected to increase with global warming of 1.5°C and increase further with 2°C. It also notes that limiting to 1.5 °C would have less severe impacts on human systems, including reduced heat-related mortality and outmigration in agricultural-dependent communities.

    Dr. Djalante emphasized the groundbreaking interdisciplinary nature of the report as well as the inclusive group of authors that produced it. “I engaged directly with climate scientists working on mitigation. Working across disciplines is important for sustainability science, and it is at core of UNU-IAS research as well. This is the first time that IPCC-affiliated experts on physical science, adaptation, and mitigation have collaborated in this way. It is also vital that female scientists and scientists from developing countries that have been traditionally underrepresented are getting greater recognition.”

    Dr. Djalante was one of sixty lead authors on the report (91 authors of 44 citizenships and 40 countries of residence took part in total), representing Indonesia and Japan, respectively.

    The report will figure as a key scientific input to the United Nations Climate Change conference in Poland in December, where governments will review the Paris Agreement to address climate change.