GLOBAL WARMING - LET'S NOT LOSE ANOTHER FIVE YEARS
2 February 2007
It's official: human-induced climate change is a real and serious threat to our planet - so it's time for government and industry to take action to reduce the pace of change and give societies and ecosystems extra time to adapt.
That's the message from President of the Australian Academy of Science Professor Kurt Lambeck in the wake of the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The report confirms that human release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere has caused and will continue to cause global warming for many decades.
Professor Lambeck said: 'The latest findings strengthen the assessments in the previous reports - released in 1990, 1996 and 2001.
'This intensive review of the past five years' scientific evidence was undertaken by hundreds of scientists worldwide and confirms what we already know. We have now lost five years that could have been used in implementing remedial actions.'
Changes to our climate system are already evident - warmer oceans, rising sea-levels, huge reductions in Arctic sea-ice and melting glaciers.
'Since the report in 2001, computer models used to predict climate change have vastly improved and are now converging. Predictions are for more droughts and reduced rainfalls throughout much of Australia and accelerated sea level rise and changing seasonal weather patterns worldwide
'Climate change is here to stay. We must open our eyes to what may be the most significant issue facing not only Australia but the planet.'