New IPCC report will include chapters on technology development and transfer for carbon dioxide removal

New Delhi: Part Three of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Sixth Assessment Report will for the first time include chapters on the development and transfer of technology to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, the report’s authors revealed last week.

“We have documents on the removal of carbon dioxide; that is, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, as well as reducing emissions, and that’s a much bigger goal than before,” said Jim Skea, co-chair of the report’s Task Force 3. and professor at Imperial College London, in a media. briefing last week.

The issue of carbon capture and removal technologies has been the subject of debate, with climate activists saying it reduces pressure on developed economies to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels. Many of these technologies are still in development.

At the press conference, the report’s authors said it was “unequivocally” that emissions were accelerating climate change and that carbon removal was one of many strategies assessed.

Negotiations on the Summary for Policymakers – a document containing the main findings of the report – between scientists and world governments are currently underway and they will go through it line by line, before agreeing on the final text. .

The IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report includes contributions from three working groups, and while the reports of the first and second groups were published in April 2021 and February 2022, the third is due to be published on April 4.

The previous two reports had warned that global temperatures had already risen 1.1 degrees above pre-industrial levels and that unless drastic changes were made now, adapting to climate change would become more difficult.

The report of working group 3 will deal with the mitigation of climate change.

Crossing the 1.5 degree limit

The new report will also take a closer look at the link between societal behaviors and climate change mitigation.

“What we are looking at is how the different social actors, say, for example, a citizen, an individual, a professional, what they can bring in terms of mitigation and how they can contribute,” Joyashree said. Roy, teacher. at Jadavpur University, Kolkata, and lead author of one of the report’s chapters.

Reports from Task Forces 1 and 2 had warned that unless drastic emission cuts were made immediately, temperatures would breach the limit set by the Paris Agreement – 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels – over the next two decades.

The authors of the Task Force 3 report said it would be difficult to predict what mitigation strategies might look like if the 1.5 degree mark were to be breached.

“It’s not impossible (to stay within the 1.5 degree limit),” Skea said, adding, “The next time an IPCC report comes out, we could be very close to or beyond the level. of 1.5. But it’s not mainstreamed yet, because we can actually take immediate action and make drastic reductions quickly.

(Editing by Poulomi Banerjee)

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Ruby A. Robillard