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Limiting Global Warming Vital To Australia Preventing Global Warming Entering “Uncharted Territory”

New research commissioned by the Australian Climate Institute has concluded that it is imperative for Australia to involve itself in limiting global warming to well below 1.5°C to prevent the impacts upon Australia entering into “uncharted territory.”

The Climate Institute commissioned globally recognized science and policy institute Climate Analytics to analyze the implications for Australia of achieving the goal decided upon at last December’s Paris climate change conference of limiting global warming to “well below” 2°C above pre-Industrial levels, and to pursue action to limit warming to 1.5°C. The results are unsurprising, given Australia’s already sensitive environment and climate responses.

“Climate change is already at dangerous levels, as we experience around 1°C of warming,” said Climate Institute CEO, John Connor.

“This research makes it abundantly clear even warming of 1.5°C would see current extreme heat waves, droughts and mass coral bleaching events on the Great Barrier Reef becoming the new normal.

“At 2°C, our global climate system would move from the upper end of present day climate variability into uncharted territory, resulting in extreme, costly and dangerous impacts for Australia.”

Scientific evidence has already placed global warming at around 1°C above pre-Industrial levels, and has further concluded that warming is on a path to surpass 2°C. For Australia, a country already known for its climatic extremes, that could mean a range of possibilities, according to Climate Analytics. Specifically, the authors of the report concluded that under a 1.5°C scenario, heatwaves could last up to 15 days for central and southern parts of Australia, and up to about 30-40 days for the northern part. When considering 2°C warming, heat waves would likely last around 20 days for central and southern part of Australia and up to 60 days in the northern part.

The 2009 heatwave in southern Australia that killed hundreds and fueled the Black Saturday bushfires was just five days long.

In line with the expected findings, the Climate Institute also requested Climate Analytics to pursue global emissions pathways consistent with limiting warming to less than 1.5°C and 2°C. The authors of the report concluded that, “By defining a long-term temperature objective, the Paris Agreement has implicitly defined the total net amount of heat trapping greenhouse gas emissions the world can release” — defined as a carbon budget. “The sustained decarbonisation of Australia’s electricity sector is necessary to meet the Australian carbon budget.”

“If Australia fails to decarbonise electricity, we would only be able to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement by requiring other economic sectors to reduce emissions more significantly and/or by placing a greater reliance on carbon sequestration.”

“With national economies, energy use and global climate inextricably linked, limiting warming to the more ambitious 1.5°C goal, or even 2°C, is heavily reliant on transforming our energy system,” said Connor. “In essence, this is a shift away from reliance on coal and other fossil fuels, towards a combination of renewables on the energy-supply side and energy efficiency improvements on the demand side.”

“Essentially, we are saying that achieving emissions reduction targets will require transformation; not achieving them will require even greater transformation as we struggle to cope with growing climate impacts.”

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I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (, and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at for more.


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