This week the World Bank released a new scientific report that paints a sobering picture of our future if we fail to “Turn Down the Heat” (http://bit.ly/UO5GNq) and put the brakes on climate change. With greenhouse gas emissions still rising, the world is barreling down a path to heat up by 4 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. That could trigger cataclysmic changes – extreme heat waves, crop-choking droughts, rising seas and floods affecting hundreds of millions of people.
This isn’t a future any of us wants for our children. The World Bank commissioned the report by the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research to help us understand the science and the potential impact of a 4-degree world.
One conclusion was that the poorest countries and the poorest people are expected to suffer the most. The report foresees inundated coastal cities, increasing risks to food production, water scarcity in many regions, more frequent tropical cyclones, and irreversible loss of biodiversity. Some of the most vulnerable cities are in Mozambique, Madagascar, Mexico, Venezuela, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam.