Thursday September 19, 2019

Global Greenhouse Gas Level Continues To Rise, Need For a New Political and Investment Paradigm

The WMO is honoured to support UN member states and the Security Council in the provision of top-quality information on weather, climate, water and environment-related threats to peace and security.

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Earth depletion
Earth depletion, Pixabay

Global greenhouse gas concentrations continue to rise to record levels in 2018-2019, the chief economist of World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) has told United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

“Global average greenhouse gas concentrations of CO2 (carbon dioxide) reached 405.5 parts per million in 2017 and continue to rise to record levels in 2018-2019,” Professor Pavel Kabat was quoted as saying by Xinhua news agency on Friday.

“The last time the Earth experienced a comparable concentration of CO2 was 3 million to 5 million years ago, when the temperature was 2-3 degrees Celsius warmer and sea level was 10-20 meters higher than now.”

marine and ocean life
Ocean heat content is also at record levels, with far-reaching, lasting consequences for marine life,pixabay

 

The past four years have been the warmest on record, with many high-impact weather events which bear the hallmarks of climate change. The 20 warmest years on record have been in the past 22 years. The global average temperature is nearly 1 degree Celcius above the pre-industrial era, said Kabat in the WMO’s first ever briefing to the Security Council.

He noted that the World Economic Forum taking place in Davos, Switzerland, has put extreme weather, natural disasters, climate change and water crises as the top four existential threats in its Global Risks Report 2019.

These show significant interconnections with other shocks and impacts to peace and security and sustainable development, he said.

Research by the WMO and its partners and network of scientists shows that sea level rise is accelerating, as is the melting of polar ice sheets, posing an increasing existential threat to small island developing countries, said Kabat.

Climate change, carbon
The Amazon Tall Tower Observatory stands in Sebastiao do Uatuma located in the Amazon rain forest in Brazil’s Amazonas state, Aug. 22, 2015. The tower, built by Brazilian and German governments, collects data on greenhouse gases. VOA

The shrinking of Arctic sea ice affects not just the local environment and indigenous peoples, but also influences weather patterns in the world’s populated regions. Glacier melt continues unchecked, with short-term impacts including increased flooding and a long-term threat to water supplies for many millions of people.

Ocean heat content is also at record levels, with far-reaching, lasting consequences for marine life, coral reefs and food security, he said.

earth, digital
Environmental threats like climate change and pollution are linked to lethargic enforcement of laws governing management of vital ecosystems, says a report released on Thursday by UN Environment.

Climate change has a multitude of security impacts, rolling back the gains in nutrition and access to food, heightening the risk of wildfires and exacerbating air quality challenges, increasing the potential for water conflict, leading to more internal displacement and migration, warned Kabat.

“It is increasingly regarded as a national security threat.”

He expressed the hope for closer collaboration and for the establishment of mechanisms for future briefings to the Security Council “to provide authoritative information for decision-making and support the diplomatic business of the council in areas appropriate to the understanding and analysis of peace and security threats.”

Also Read: Vitamin A Deficiency In Children Reduces Immunity, WHO On Malnutrition

The WMO is honoured to support UN member states and the Security Council in the provision of top-quality information on weather, climate, water and environment-related threats to peace and security, he said.

Kabat said there is a need for a new political and investment paradigm to build a new generation of hydro-climate forecasting and early-warning services.

“This should become a component of basic country-infrastructure, like roads and bridges,” he said. (IANS)

Next Story

Iran Installing New Centrifuges, UN Confirms

The U.N.'s nuclear watchdog agency said Monday its inspectors confirmed Iran is installing more advanced centrifuges

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UN, Iran, nuclear, Centrifuges, Install
Acting Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Cornel Feruta from Romania waits for the start of the IAEA board of governors meeting at the International Center in Vienna, Austria, Sept. 9, 2019. VOA

The U.N.’s nuclear watchdog agency said Monday its inspectors confirmed Iran is installing more advanced centrifuges that can be used to refine uranium.

An International Atomic Energy Agency statement said the equipment includes several types of centrifuges prohibited under the 2015 nuclear deal Iran reached with a group of world powers that limited its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.

UN, Iran, Centrifuges, Install, nuclear
Iran says it will continue to work with the IAEA to allow inspections of its nuclear facilities.. Pixabay

The confirmation comes days after Iranian officials announced the move.  It was the latest step Iran has taken away from the nuclear agreement as it complains European nations are not doing enough to help Iran’s oil sector deal with U.S. sanctions.

Iran earlier decided to break the limit on the amount of enriched uranium it is allowed to hold at one time, and a limit on the level to which it can enrich.

ALSO READ: Rate of Blood Pressure among Pregnant Women Aged 35 and Over in US Increases by More than 75%

The United States imposed its sanctions after abandoning the agreement last year.  President Donald Trump has said he wants to negotiate a new deal, but one that also includes limitations on Iran’s ballistic missile program and a longer timeline than the original agreement struck under the administration of his predecessor Barack Obama.

Despite openly taking steps to go against limitations specified in the agreement, Iran says it will continue to work with the IAEA to allow inspections of its nuclear facilities. (VOA)