This Synthesis Report with its Summary for Policymakers is the fourth and final part of the Third Assessment Report (TAR) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It draws together and integrates for the benefit of policy makers, and others, and in response to questions identified by governments and subsequently agreed by the IPCC, information that has been approved and/ or accepted by the IPCC.
The Climate Change Science Compendium is a review of some 400 major scientific contributions to our understanding of Earth Systems and climate that have been released through peer-reviewed literature or from research institutions over the last three years, since the close of research for consideration by the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
The Green Economy Report is compiled by UNEP’s Green Economy Initiative in collaboration with economists and experts worldwide. It demonstrates that the greening of economies is not generally a drag on growth but rather a new engine of growth; that it is a net generator of decent jobs, and that it is also a vital strategy for the elimination of persistent poverty.
A growing number of multilateral development organizations and international agencies are now using programmatic approaches to more effectively support developing countries and countries with economies in transition. Yet the programmatic approach is not a new modality for the Global Environmental Facility (GEF). At its meeting in December 1999, the GEF Council supported the evolution of GEF support to emphasize synergistic programs that transcend national borders.
IPCC’s Third Assessment Report stated ‘there is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming observed over the past 50 years is attributable to human activities’. It went on to point out that ‘human influences will continue to change atmospheric composition throughout the 21st century’ (IPCC, 2001c). Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the greenhouse gas that makes the largest contribution from human activities.
Only six years ago, in 2002, at the World Summit on Sustainable Development, the world’s Governments reaffirmed their commitment to safeguarding the environment for future generations. They did not anticipate just how soon the situation would deteriorate. We face a daily barrage of bad news: accelerated climate change, natural disasters, food shortages.
UNEP’s Climate Change Strategy is the result of a comprehensive process involving external experts and UNEP staff from across the organization. The strategy is built on the analysis of UNEP’s political mandate, the existing portfolio of climate change activities and the areas of distinctiveness. The Climate Change Strategy provides the foundation for transforming the organization’s engagement on climate change and for developing a results-oriented programme of work.
GEF projects have been a catalytic force for change, helping to deepen decision makers’ understanding of how to develop an adaptation project and integrate adaptation measures into development sectors. Thanks to the LDCF’s and SCCF’s pioneering work, we have financed projects that have balanced the GEF’s mandate on adaptation with the development mandate of our implementing agencies. Today we have early results to show for this successful collaboration.
This IPCC Special Report was developed in response to invitations by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)1 and the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer2 to prepare a balanced scientific, technical and policy relevant report regarding alternatives to ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) that affect the global climate system. It has been prepared by the IPCC and the Technology and Economic Assessment Panel (TEAP) of the Montreal Protocol.
This study makes use of the carbon footprint calculators developed by the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP). This includes both the UN Carbon Footprint Calculator as well as the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Flight Calculator. This study covers carbon emissions that arise due to activities under the direct operational control of WHO. This includes emissions over which the organisation’s offices have influence as well as various, but not all, indirect carbon emissions that arise due to its activities:
This report is an independent assessment of the environmental initiatives taken by Shanghai in its preparation for the World Exposition in 2010 (Expo 2010) in Shanghai, China. It aims to provide an objective appraisal of the efforts of Shanghai in improving its environmental quality and organizing an environment-friendly Expo. Measures and achievements are documented and analyzed and recommendations are made to assist the Shanghai municipal government to strengthen environmental initiatives for and beyond the Expo 2010
Between now and 2030, world energy demand is projected to grow by 1.6 percent annually, adding up to a dramatic 45 percent increase. Meanwhile, energy demand in developing and transition countries is predicted to grow even faster than in developed countries. Such rapidly growing energy demand is particularly challenging given that most of the world’s population still relies on energy from limited fossil fuel sources and traditional biomass.
Achieving the ultimate objective of the UNFCCC, will require technological innovation and the rapid and widespread transfer and implementation of technologies, including know-how for mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions. Transfer of technology for adaptation to climate change is also an important element of reducing vulnerability to climate change.
Climate change is now recognized as one of the defining challenges of the 21st century, and protecting health from its impacts is an emerging priority for the public health community. Further, the potential range and magnitude of associated health risks should be central to the rationale for actions to mitigate the occurrence of climate change. Research in this field is increasing, but it is still comparatively weak in relation to the complexity of the issue and the magnitude of the health risks that may arise from inadequate or inappropriate responses.
This report presents the initial action undertaken by UNEP immediately following the cessation of hostilities in the Gaza Strip in January 2009,and summarizes the scientific findings of the complex assessment process carried out by UNEP at the request of its Governing Council during the spring and early summer of 2009.Concrete recommendations are provided for the remediation of environmental damage caused by the recent escalation of hostilities, as well as for longer-term improvement of the environmental situation in the Gaza Strip.
An Assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. This underlying report, adopted section by section at IPCC Plenary XXVII (Valencia, Spain, 12-17 November 2007),represents the formally agreed statement of the IPCC concerning key findings and uncertainties contained in the Working Group contributions to the Fourth Assessment Report.
With the human population projected to reach 7 billion, our planet faces an unprecedented challenge in meeting food and fibre production needs in the coming decade. The recent GEF-funded International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development alerted us to the increasing rates of land degradation in many regions that may limit the ability of agro-ecosystems to achieve these needs.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) developed long-term emission scenarios in 1990 and 1992. These scenarios have been widely used in the analysis of possible climate change, its impacts, and options to mitigate climate change. In 1995, the IPCC 1992 scenarios were evaluated. The evaluation recommended that significant changes (since 1992) in the understanding of driving forces of emissions and methodologies should be addressed.
It is clear that the health sector can also play a leader¬ship role in mitigating climate change – that is reducing its magnitude and consequences – by getting our own house in order. By doing so the health sector will create a series of health, economic and social co-benefits that improve the health of the population in addition to the traditional role of the health sector in the delivery of quality health care
This handbook is designed to serve as a guide those engaged in the task of mainstreaming poverty-environment linkages into national development planning. it draws on a substantial body of experience at the country level and many lessons learned by UNDP and UNEP in working with governments - especially ministries of planning, finance and environment - to support efforts to integrate the complex interrelationship between poverty reduction and improved environmental management into national planning and decision-making
The Working Group I contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report describes progress in understanding of the human and natural drivers of climate change, observed climate change, climate processes and attribution, and estimates of projected future climate change. It builds upon past IPCC assessments and incorporates new findings from the past six years of research.
We live in an increasingly interconnected and interdependent world, in which economic, social, environmental, and cultural boundaries and impacts are difficult to define. In this global commons, forests represent a truly unique natural resource, covering nearly 30 per cent of our planet’s land area. They help counter climate change, protect biodiversity, and ensure the livelihoods of billions.
The Special Report on Land Use, Land-Use Change, and Forestry was prepared in response to a request from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA). At its Eighth Session in Bonn from 2-12 June 1998, SBSTA requested a report examining the scientific and technical state of understanding for carbon sequestration strategies related to land use, land-use change, and forestry activities and relevant Articles of the Kyoto Protocol.
Migration not infrequently gets a bad press. Negative stereotypes portraying migrants as ‘stealing our jobs’ or ‘scrounging off the taxpayer’ abound in sections of the media and public opinion, especially in times of recession. For others, the word ‘migrant’ may evoke images of people at their most vulnerable. This year’s Human Development Report, Overcoming Barriers: Human Mobility and Development, challenges such stereotypes. It seeks to broaden and rebalance perceptions of migration to reflect a more complex and highly variable reality.
"Addiction is a terrible thing. It consumes and controls us, makes us deny important truths and blinds us to the consequences of our actions. Our society is in the grip of a dangerous greenhouse gas habit. The message of this book is that we are all part of the solution. Whether you are an individual, a business, an organization or a government, there are many steps you can take to reduce your climate footprint."
The Assessment is of current scientific understanding of the impacts of climate change on natural, managed and human systems, the capacity of these systems to adapt and their vulnerability. It builds upon past IPCC assessments and incorporates new knowledge gained since the Third Assessment.
GEF unites 178 member governments – in partnership with international institutions, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and the private sector – to address global environmental issues. An independent financial organization, the GEF provides grants to developing countries and countries with economies in transition for projects related to biodiversity, climate change, international waters, land degradation, the ozone layer, and persistent organic pollutants.
This Special Report was prepared following a request from the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. The state of understanding of the relevant science of the atmosphere, aviation technology, and socio-economic issues associated with mitigation options is assessed and reported for both subsonic and supersonic fleets.
This is a listing of the reports submitted to the Conference of the Parties (COP) and the Committee for the Review of the Implementation of the Convention (CRIC). The reports detail how the Parties carry out their commitments under the Convention (according to Article 26 of the Convention).
Challenge and opportunity characterize the award of the 2008 Olympic Games to Beijing. China's rapid economic development, with GDP growing at more than 11 per cent per year, has generated widespread concern about the environmental implications for China and the world, both within China and throughout the international community. In response, the Government of China has instituted a growing number of environmental initiatives and legislation designed to promote environmental sustainability as part of the country's ambitious growth strategy.
The Working Group III contribution to the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) focuses on new literature on the scientific, technological, environmental, economic and social aspects of mitigation of climate change, published since the IPCC Third Assessment Report (TAR) and the Special Reports on CO2 Capture and Storage (SRCCS) and on Safeguarding the Ozone Layer and the Global Climate System (SROC).
Vulnerable countries, communities, and ecosystems are already feeling the effects of climate change, as sea levels and temperature rise, rainfall patterns change, and extreme weather events, such as droughts, floods, storms, and other natural disasters, occur more frequently and intensively. These events not only adversely affect core development needs, such as access to drinking water, food security, irrigation, and health, but also entire ecosystems on which all life forms depend— and they exact the heaviest toll on poor people.
Under the leadership of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the United Nations System Chief Executives Board for Coordination (CEB) has initiated a process of aligning its strengths to achieve a coordinated action-oriented approach to the global and multifaceted challenge of climate change.
Warming of the climate system is beyond argument, as shown by observations of increases in average air and ocean temperatures, the widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global sea levels. But as the messages from scientists become increasingly explicit, the gap between the need for action they project and the climate policy the world leaders put in place remains. The purpose of this guide is to increase public understanding about the urgency of action to combat climate change and its impacts.
The idea of a special IPCC publication dedicated to water and climate change dates back to the 19th IPCC Session held in Geneva in April 2002, when the Secretariat of the World Climate Programme – Water and the International Steering Committee of the Dialogue on Water and Climate requested that the IPCC prepare a Special Report on Water and Climate
Leadership in environmental protection requires consensus among a wide variety of stakeholders, sometimes with widely diverging interests, on highly complex social, economic and technological issues. As the global forum for international civil aviation, ICAO has succeeded for more than forty years in bringing the world together around increasingly stringent regulations for noise at airports and aircraft engine emissions, yet more must be done.
This report on Good Practice Guidance for Land Use, Land-Use Change and Forestry (GPG-LULUCF) is the response to the invitation by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to develop good practice guidance for land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF).
The separation in practice of the climate change and development agendas has distorted the global debate on the two biggest policy challenges facing the international community. According to the World Economic and Social Survey 2009, an integrated approach based on the concept of sustainable development is urgently needed.
The main focus of the AEO-2 report is on sustainable livelihoods and the environment. The report profiles Africa’s environmental resources as assets for the continent’s development. It highlights the potential of the region’s natural resource base to support the development agenda of NEPAD and sustain human livelihoods. The report has five sections namely: Environment for Development, Environmental State-and-Trends: 20-Year Retrospective, Emerging Challenges, Outlook and Policy Recommendations.
To understand better the potential impacts and associated dangers of global climate change, Working Group II of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) offers this Third Assessment Report (TAR) on the state of knowledge concerning the sensitivity, adaptability, and vulnerability of physical, ecological, and social systems to climate change.
In the Asian and Pacific region, facing ever-increasing demands for food, water, shelter, sanitation, energy, health services and economic and human security, how will we cope with all these added pressures? How will we meet the difficult global challenges before us, while simultaneously improving people’s lives and conserving our natural resources? The Governments in the Asian and Pacific region have unanimously agreed to respond to these challenges through the promising path of environmentally sustainable economic growth, or “Green Growth”.
This report on Definitions and Methodological Options to Inventory Emissions from Direct Human-induced Degradation of Forests and Devegetation of Other Vegetation Types is the response from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to an invitation from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) .
This publication provides the first ever insight into the greenhouse gas inventory for the UN system. It contains data of the greenhouse gas emissions of all UN agencies, as well as an overview of the initial steps taken to reduce emissions. The publication provides the UN system with a baseline to track emission reduction efforts in future years.
The fourth report in the Global Environment Outlook (GEO) series from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) provides a comprehensive, scientifically credible, policy-relevant and up-to-date assessment of, and outlook for, the state of the global environment. GEO-4 is published 20 years after the landmark World Commission on Sustainable Developments Bruntland Report of 1987.
This report assesses the scientific, technological, environmental, economic and social aspects of the mitigation of climate change. Research in climate change mitigation 1 has continued since the publication of the IPCC Second Assessment Report (SAR), taking into account political changes such as the agreement on the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1997, and is reported on here.
The fifth Ministerial Conference on Environment and Development in Asia and the Pacific, held in Seoul, Republic of Korea, from 24 to 29 March 2005, concentrated on achieving environmentally sustainable economic growth, or “Green Growth”. I am very pleased to acknowledge that it was a landmark conference for the future of our region.
This report on Good Practice Guidance and Uncertainty Management in National Greenhouse Gas Inventories is the response to the request from the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to complete its work on uncertainty and prepare a report on good practice in inventory management.
The most recent analysis of the UN's performance in implementing the UN's Climate Neutral Strategy. The report includes the details of the greenhouse gas emissions for 52 organizations in 2009, as well as a breakdown of emissions by activity. It also details progress in reducing emissions and plans for the future. The a Foreword by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and a Preface by the UNEP Executive Director, Achim Steiner, this report is the first and last word in the UN's sustainability performance to date.