Statement of Nathaniel Keohane
President, Center for Climate and Energy Solutions
February 28, 2022
On the findings of the Working Group II Contribution to the IPCC’s Sixth Assessment Report:
“The IPCC’s latest report adds new urgency and detail to what has become increasingly apparent for years: that the damages from climate change are widespread, reaching every corner of the globe, and costly to countries, communities, and companies. We already struggle to manage the growing danger and costs from stronger storms, more intense wildfires, flooding, and heatwaves, and the threat of rising sea levels. The IPCC’s report demonstrates that adaptation efforts work, but also paints a stark picture that they are limited as the dangers grow and that investment in adaptation must ramp up dramatically even as we take steps to slash climate pollution to reach net-zero emissions by mid-century.
“We continue to run an uncontrolled experiment on the planet’s future. The results are impossible to ignore, weighing heavily against the most vulnerable people, communities, and nations. We cannot restore enough wetlands, build ever-higher levees, pop-up ever-greater numbers of summer cooling stations, or douse every wildfire we see today – let alone address the needs of a future in which we continually neglect the source of those super-charged disasters. Every tenth of a degree of temperature rise is a higher-stakes gamble with no winners, as poorer and island nations suffer and vulnerable communities bear a greater burden than their share.
“The window of opportunity for adaptation investments to prepare for the climate impacts to come is closing fast. In the race between more severe impacts and the investments in adaptation needed to deal with them, adaptation is losing.”
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About C2ES: The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) is an independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to forge practical solutions to climate change. Our mission is to advance strong policy and action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote clean energy, and strengthen resilience to climate impacts. Learn more at www.c2es.org.