LEGAL ACTION FOR THE CLIMATE GOAL: TOWARDS EQUITY, SURVIVAL AND THE RULE OF LAW
“PRESIDENT TRUMP MAY HAVE HIS ALTERNATIVE FACTS,
BUT ALTERNATIVE FACTS DO NOT WORK IN A COURTROOM”
Climate Change: A Risk Assessment (2015)
(Joint report of Sir David King, UK Foreign Secretary's Special Representative for Climate Change; Professor Zhou Dadi, China's National Expert Committee on Climate Change; Dr Arunabha Ghosh, CEO, India's Council on Energy, Environment and Water; Professor Daniel Schrag, US President's Council of Advisors on Science & Technology; Professor Qi Ye, Tshinghua University)
UNFCCC Synthesis Report on the Aggregate Effect of INDCs (2015)
UK Committee on Climate Change, UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 2017 Synthesis report: priorities for the next five years
31 July 2017: Less than 2˚C warming by 2100 unlikely, Raftery et al, Nature
American Meteorological Society: State of the Climate in 2015: Armed-conflict risks enhanced by climate-related disasters in ethnically fractionalized countries,2016, Carl-Friedrich Schleussnera, Jonathan F. Dongesa,
Reik V. Donnera, and
Hans Joachim Schellnhuber
Greenhouse-gas emission targets for limiting global warming to 2 °C, Nature 458, 1158-1162 (30 April 2009), Malte Meinshausen, Nicolai Meinshausen, William Hare, Sarah C. B. Raper, Katja Frieler, Reto Knutti, David J. Frame, & Myles R. Allen: Limiting cumulative CO2 emissions over 2000–50 to 1,000 Gt CO2 yields a 25% probability of warming exceeding 2 °C—and a limit of 1,440 Gt CO2 yields a 50% probability—given a representative estimate of the distribution of climate system properties. As known 2000–06 CO2 emissions were ~234 Gt CO2, less than half the proven economically recoverable oil, gas and coal reserves can still be emitted up to 2050 to achieve such a goal.
Attribution of climate extreme events, Kevin E. Trenberth, John T. Fasullo & Theodore G. Shepherd, Nature Climate Change 5, 725–730, (2015)
Attributing human mortality during extreme heat waves to anthropogenic climate change, Mitchell et al, July 2016
Economic Analysis of US Decarbonization Pathways, November 5, 2015
Young People's Burden: Requirement of Negative CO2 Emissions, James Hansen and others, October 2016
19 July 2017: Methane Seeps Out as Arctic Permafrost Starts to Resemble Swiss Cheese(Inside Climate News)
July 2017: Strong geologic methane emissions from discontinuous terrestrial permafrost in the Mackenzie Delta, Canada (Katrin Konhert et al)
26 May 2017: Alaska's Sea Ice Is Melting Unusually Early, 'Another Sign Arctic Is Unraveling(Inside Climate News)
8 May 2017: Thawing Alaska Permafrost Sends Autumn CO2 Emissions Surging (Inside Climate News):
'Permafrost currently covers about 5.8 million square miles. A study published in April that looked at the impact rising temperatures would have on the permafrost and found that as much as 2.5 million square miles of it could thaw if global temperatures reached 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial temperatures. Another study, published in February, found that 52,000 square miles of Canadian permafrost was already in rapid decline.
The new Alaska study is another step toward understanding how sensitive the Arctic is to increasing temperatures. The Arctic permafrost seals in a massive store of carbon, roughly double the amount of CO2 currently in Earth's atmosphere.'
25 April 2017: Extreme Arctic Melt Is Raising Sea Level Rise Threat; New Estimate Nearly Twice IPCC's (Inside Climate News)
March 2017: Carbon dioxide sources from Alaska driven by increasing early winter respiration from Arctic tundra (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA)
18 May 2017: Miles of Ice Collapsing into the Sea (New York Times)
30 March 2016: Climate Model Predicts West Antarctic Ice Sheet Could Melt Rapidly(New York Times):
"The great ice sheet, larger than Mexico, is thought to be potentially vulnerable to disintegration from a relatively small amount of global warming, and capable of raising the sea level by 12 feet or more should it break up. But researchers long assumed the worst effects would take hundreds — if not thousands — of years to occur.
Now, new research suggests the disaster scenario could play out much sooner.
Continued high emissions of heat-trapping gases could launch a disintegration of the ice sheet within decades, according to a study published Wednesday, heaving enough water into the ocean to raise the sea level as much as three feet by the end of this century.
With ice melting in other regions, too, the total rise of the sea could reach five or six feet by 2100, the researchers found. That is roughly twice the increase reported as a plausible worst-case scenario by a United Nations panel just three years ago, and so high it would likely provoke a profound crisis within the lifetimes of children being born today...
The paper published Wednesday does contain some good news. A far more stringent effort to limit emissions of greenhouse gases would stand a fairly good chance of saving West Antarctica from collapse, the scientists found. That aspect of their paper contrasts with other recent studies postulating that a gradual disintegration of West Antarctica may have already become unstoppable."
March 2016: Contribution of Antarctica to past and future sea-level rise, Robert M. DeConto
& David Pollard, Nature
'Fossil fuel corporations have a vested interest in the continued exploitation of fossil fuels. The fossil fuel industry exerts great pressure upon national governments and the UNFCCC process. In 2014, the fossil fuel industry spent US$141 million lobbying in Washington, DC. ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell and three oil industry trade groups spend approximately $115 million annually to obstruct laws on climate change. ExxonMobil spent US$30.9 million from 1998 to 2014 on the support of think tanks running climate denial campaigns. ExxonMobil has stated that serious greenhouse gas emissions cuts are ‘highly unlikely’ and plans to continue producing fossil fuels without limit.'
Boom, Richards, Leonard