The World Bank on Wednesday warned that severe hardships from global warming could be felt within a generation, with a new study detailing devastating impacts in Africa and Asia.
The report presents “an alarming scenario for the days and years ahead—what we could face in our lifetime,” said World Bank President Jim Yong Kim.
“The scientists tell us that if the world warms by two degrees Centigrade (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit)—warming which may be reached in 20 to 30 years—that will cause widespread food shortages, unprecedented heat waves, and more intense cyclones,” he said in a statement.
An update of the Bank’s November “Turn Down the Heat” climate report, the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate said there was evidence in the past seven months that previous projections for greenhouse gas emissions had been too low.
Now, it said, there was a growing chance that warming will reach or exceed four degrees Celsius in this century “in the absence of near-term actions and further commitments to reduce emissions.”
The United Nations has proposed the goal of limiting global warming to two degrees Celsius from pre-industrial levels, setting for the first time measurable targets to curb greenhouse-gas emissions.
International negotiations are aimed at reaching an agreement on that limit by 2015, with the pact due to take effect by 2020.
In the report, commissioned by the World Bank, scientists from around the world focused on the risks of climate change to development in Sub-Saharan Africa, Southeast Asia and South Asia, home to some of the world’s poorest people.
Read more at: Phys.org