In September 2019, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a U.N. body, released its latest report highlighting the dire consequences of failing to keep global warming to 1.5 Celsius above pre-industrial levels. To date, average global temperatures have already increased by 1 C. The report, like others before it, details how much worse the effects of global climate change would be should temperatures increase by 2.0 C or higher.
An earlier IPCC report on climate change stated that limiting the rise in global temperature to a 1.5 C increase — equal to roughly 2.7 F — “would require rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.” Indeed, some climate scientists estimate it would require massive reductions in greenhouse gas emissions almost immediately, and zero global emissions by 2050 to achieve that goal.
The global community is nowhere near to making that goal a reality, particularly as the United States, one of the largest carbon emitters, has announced its intention to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, which it will do in 2020. These are the countries that produce the most CO2 emissions.
Many experts are saying that temperature rise is already locked in at a 2.0 C increase — the equivalent of 3.6 F — the point at which the consequences will become much more severe.
But should a major change occur in the immediate future and global warming is halted at the 1.5 C target, it is important to note that this does not mean the effects of global climate change on the Earth and its population will not be serious. These are the places where weather is getting worse because of Climate Change.
Already, the approximately 1.0 C increase has had severe impacts on global weather, sea levels, and ecosystems. When 1.5 C is reached, the impacts, as determined by scientists and experts around the world, are projected to be disastrous.
24/7 Wall St. consulted reports by groups such as the IPCC, NASA, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Association, the U.S. Global Change Research Program, and more, to identify the effects of global warming that either have already taken place or will occur even if warming is limited to a 1.5 C increase. If temperatures rise to 2.0 C or more, these are some of the more extreme disaster scenarios that will get worse if we do nothing.