News / Asia

Global Warming Trend 'Unmistakable' UN Says

Smoke from a bushfire billows over beach goers at Carlton, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) east of Hobart, Australia, January 4, 2013.
Smoke from a bushfire billows over beach goers at Carlton, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) east of Hobart, Australia, January 4, 2013.
Phil Mercer
The United Nations' chief science body is meeting in Tasmania as climate scientists urge Australia to prepare for rising sea levels that could put about $300 billion worth of commercial property, infrastructure and homes at risk.  The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change summit in Hobart is the latest round of talks before the release of its fifth major paper in September.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change insists its methods are both vigorous and reliable. The United Nations' main climate agency says the global warming trend is "unmistakable" and it is defending the science behind its assertion. 

More than 250 scientists who will contribute to the September report, have promised to deliver "scientifically defensible" conclusions when the study is released.

Global warming trend

The IPCC meets as Australia confronts a record-breaking heat wave that has sparked widespread wild fires across the country’s southeast.
 
IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri has no doubt that the extreme heat is part of a global warming trend.

Pachauri hopes that the international community will rally behind the issue of climate change as it did with previous global efforts designed to stop the depletion of the ozone layer.

“Yes, I am concerned no doubt, but I also have a high opinion of human wisdom that I think, at some stage, we will bring about change," Pachauri said. "I mean, the world did act on the Montreal Protocol, the whole problem of depletion of the ozone layer and it happened very fast.

Now, I expect that perhaps this, as is the case, is going to take a little longer, but hopefully we will get action across the board.”

Rising sea levels

Australia’s government-appointed climate commission is also warning that global warming is increasing the risk of scorching heat waves becoming more frequent.   
There are concerns too that rising sea levels could threaten the country’s famous beachfront lifestyle.

More than 75 percent of Australians live near the ocean.

But Alan Stokes, the head of the National Sea Change Task force, which represents many coastal councils and communities, says severe flooding in the state of Queensland two years ago has shown how vulnerable low-lying areas can be.

“People all around Australia want to live near the coast," explained Stokes. "They’d like to live as close to it as they can but there is a risk involved, and we don’t want to find ourselves in the position in the next 20, 30 or 90 years of facing frequent extreme flooding events such as those we that saw in Queensland, which could destroy those properties and place people in harm’s way.”  

Climate scientists are concerned that the melting of the Greenland ice sheet could pose serious problems to vulnerable areas elsewhere, including low-lying island nations in the South Pacific that rise barely a few meters above sea level.

The leaders of Kiribati have warned that its entire population of 100,000 people could be forced to migrate if their homes are swamped by the ocean.

Climate change is an issue that divides Australia, a nation that relies on cheap supplies of coal.  Although many people think that society’s reliance on fossil fuels is causing temperatures to rise, others believe that a shifting climate is simply part of a natural cycle and is not caused by man’s excesses.

You May Like

For Lebanon-based Refugees, Desperation Fuels Perilous Passage

In a war that has caused an estimated three million people to flee Syria, efforts to make perilous sea journey in search of asylum expected to increase More

South African Brewer Tackles Climate Change

Mega-brewer SAB Miller sent delegates to climate summit in Peru, says it is one of many private companies taking their own steps to fight climate change More

Indonesia Reports Increase in Citizens Joining Islamic State

Officials say more than 350 of its citizens are now in Syria or Iraq to fight with Islamic State - 50 more than last month More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Niyomugabo from: Nigeria ,YOLA
January 17, 2013 5:40 PM
Global warm is due to atmospheric pollution. Every second the CO2 as main cause is produced. However, the important thing should be one world as one Hill, find the solutions, protecting our Ozone by limiting uncontrolled combustion,every citizen of nation may plant one tree and you will see how the green world will become!Take example of Rwanda environment protection strategies.Some countries undergo the consequences alone.Here we need Global thinking. Nowadays, there is Ices for melting, but in future there maybe no more water; I mean some lac have disappeared, Deserts expended ...


by: NVO from: USA
January 16, 2013 11:30 PM
The UN is an absolute SHAM, and the whole thing is a DECEPTION!!!! Since 1998 the global temperature has continued to cool every year!! Professor Phil Jones, head of the UK’s prestigious Climate Research Unit, was quoted in the Daily Mail, Feb. 14, 2010: “…in the last 15 years there had been
no ‘statistically significant’ warming.” Remarkably, the continued cooling was not predicted by any of the UN’s IPCC computer climate models and has
virtually erased the entire global warming that occurred during the last century returning global temperatures to the 1900 level.
It is certainly time to pause and re-evaluate our climate science assumptions and proposed energy policies.


by: Tom Harris from: Ottawa, Canada
January 15, 2013 9:46 PM
What a strange article. Did the author not look at the actual global temperature statistics? We have been in a period of relative temperature stability for 16 years, according to the UK Met Office and they forecast no significant rise for another five years at least.


by: WILLIAM from: ARGENTINA
January 15, 2013 8:12 PM
A proposal: I readed in the United Nations Oficial Website -P.N.U.M.A.- that there is a Programe for the plantation of new 1000 millions of trees around the world, if we everybody wanted the reduction of global emissions of carbon dioxide, as human race, our governments, from large economies just as small economies, more than 150 countries can implemented it, you and I, my friends dont know, the most practical, cheaper, and natural way to ashort the climate change, than the implementation of a global plan like that. i beg God and global leaders to put the United Nations plan aproved and on the move. For instance the replanting of large and medium cities streets, where it shows surfaces of grasses to mull, i believe all on there the County governments can plant thounsands of trees, in the fact of U.N.O. green plan, but in tho whole world. Thanks very much. Billy


by: Richard from: Philippines
January 15, 2013 6:41 PM
I have live in Leyte, Philippines for the last 24 years. I have heard about the rising sea levels, as far as I can see they are exactly the same as in 1988.

In Response

by: Leslie Graham from: Brisbane
January 16, 2013 6:49 AM
Wow!
That's such a relief to know that the continuous measurements from thirty thousand tide gauges confirmed by the latest sattelite technology
http://www.aviso.oceanobs.com/en/news/ocean-indicators/mean-sea-level/ are all wrong because you took a walk down the beach and it looks the same to you.Great. There will be rejoicing all over the world that you have proved that sea level rise is a hoax and climate change isn't really happening.
You should be on for the Nobel Prize at least. The whole global population owes you an immense debt of gratitude.


by: Charlie Wyatt from: UK
January 15, 2013 11:10 AM
The Greenland ice sheet isn't melting and neither is Antarctica. The only melting we hear about is natural summer melt, hyped up.
I don't believe Australia's record temperature of 50.7C set in 1960 has been broken yet and so the current summer heat wave is not outside of the expected.
There has been no global warming since 1997 and the UK MET Office are not expecting any before 2017 either.
Be it Global Warming or Climate Change, it is all based on the highly taxable CO2, 96% naturally occurring.
The UK has squandered a fortune on useless wind turbines, as had Australia on desalination plants, all driven through green hysteria.
If you want to know the truth just follow the money. A good place to start would be Algore's new wealth!
Meanwhile the UK freezes.

In Response

by: Leslie Graham from: Brisbane
January 16, 2013 6:57 AM
The Greenland Ice sheet is melting at a record rate - three times faster than just 20 years ago.
Antarctica is losing mass at twince the rate expected just ten years ago.
Maximum winter ice extent has increased by 1% over the last decade due to warming weather leading to increased rain and snowfall which has in turn led to a reducttion in salinity.
As we all know salt helps to melt ice.
Also the kiribatic winds are incresing helping to spread the ice further.
You have absolutely no idea what you are talking about - and it shows.
By the way - wind is now cheaper than coal in China and they are scaling back their original plans for more coal plants and massively increasing their windmills. The plan for 2050 is 1000GW from wind with pumped water storage.
1000GW is 15 times what the UK currently generates from all sources.
It's a similar picture in India. They have scaled back their plans for coal to a mere 78GW over the next five years and are going for wind and solar because it's cheaper.
So much for useless windmills.
You know nothing about power generation - and it shows there too.

In Response

by: Charlie Wyatt from: UK
January 15, 2013 8:40 PM
In Antarctica you are talking about natural Summer ice melt after record ice extent just last September.
If you want a good example of how the Greenland Ice shelf has grown; just check out the story of 'Glacier girl!' (P38 aircraft)
No global warming since 1997...Fact.

In Response

by: Michael Jones
January 15, 2013 1:04 PM
The Greenland ice sheet is melting at a record pace shown by the film "Chasing Ice". Also, West Antarctica is melting at a record rate, largely by the warming of the ocean waters.
This is not hyped, but fact.


by: delmar jackson from: miami
January 15, 2013 10:56 AM
reducing massive 3rd world immigration to western countries which have a much higher carbon footprint would help reduce global warming . there is no good reason for the USA population to double from importing cheap labor from 3rd world countries.

In Response

by: Ripon from: Bangladesh
January 15, 2013 10:11 PM
Besides, western countries should take preventive measures so that for their own huge carbon emission events, the 3rd world countries shouldn’t go under water & affected in many ways, unnecessarily.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?i
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
December 17, 2014 11:54 AM
The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video Will Pakistan School Shooting Galvanize Pakistan Against Extremism?

The attack on a military school in Pakistan’s northwest city of Peshawar left 141 dead, including 132 children. Strong statements of condemnation poured in from across the world. The country announced three days of mourning, and the leadership, both political and military, promised retribution. VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem looks at how likely the Pakistani government is to clamp down on all extremist groups.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.
Video

Video Turkey's Authoritarianism Dismays Western Allies

The Turkish government has been defiant in the face of criticism at home and abroad for its raids targeting opposition media. The European Union on Monday expressed dismay after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lashed out at Brussels for criticizing his government's action. Turkey's bid to be considered for EU membership has been on hold while critics accuse the NATO ally of increasingly authoritarian rule. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video US-China Year in Review: Hong Kong to Climate Change

The United States is pushing for a code of conduct to resolve territorial disputes in the South China Sea as it works to improve commercial ties with Beijing. VOA State Department correspondent Scott Stearns reports on a year of U.S. policy toward China from Hong Kong to climate change.
Video

Video Japanese Leader’s Election Win Raises Potential for Conflict with Neighbors

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his allies easily won a two-thirds majority in parliament Sunday, even though the country has slipped into recession under his conservative policies. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Seoul, that the prime minister’s victory will empower him to continue economic reforms but also pursue a nationalist agenda that will likely increase tensions with Japan’s neighbors.
Video

Video Nuba Mountain Families Hide in Caves to Escape Aerial Bombings

Despite ongoing peace talks between Sudan's government and the rebel Sudan People’s Liberation Movement-North, or SPLM-N, daily aerial attacks continue in South Kordofan province’s Nuba Mountains. Adam Bailes was there and reports for VOA that government forces are targeting civilian areas, rather than military positions, with their daily bombardments.

All About America

AppleAndroid