Apr 7, 2014

Comparing the 2007 and 2014 IPCC WGII Summaries for Policymakers

This is a question of of tone and confidence. Which report provides a more stark view of the dangers of climate change? (I'm comparing the summaries since that's the only part the vast majority of people will read, and therefore is a good view on what the IPCC Working Group II wanted to emphasize.)

On current effects of climate change:

2007:
With regard to changes in snow, ice and frozen ground (including permafrost), there is high confidence that natural systems are affected...
Based on growing evidence, there is high confidence that the following effects on hydrological systems are occurring:

  • increased runoff and earlier spring peak discharge in many glacier- and snow-fed rivers [1.3]; 
  • warming of lakes and rivers in many regions, with effects on thermal structure and water quality

There is very high confidence, based on more evidence from a wider range of species, that recent warming is strongly affecting terrestrial biological systems...
Based on satellite observations since the early 1980s, there is high confidence that there has been a trend in many regions towards earlier ‘greening’ of vegetation in the spring linked to longer thermal growing seasons due to recent warming...
Much more evidence has accumulated over the past five years to indicate that changes in many physical and biological systems are linked to anthropogenic warming...
Effects of temperature increases have been documented in the following (medium confidence):

  • effects on agricultural and forestry management at Northern Hemisphere higher latitudes, such as earlier spring planting of crops, and alterations in disturbance regimes of forests due to fires and pests
  • some aspects of human health, such as heat-related mortality in Europe, infectious disease vectors in some areas, and allergenic pollen in Northern Hemisphere 
  • some human activities in the Arctic...and in lower-elevation alpine areas

Recent climate changes and climate variations are beginning to have effects on many other natural and human systems. However, based on the published literature, the impacts have not yet become established trends. Examples include:

  • Settlements in mountain regions are at enhanced risk of glacier lake outburst floods caused by melting glaciers...
  • In the Sahelian region of Africa, warmer and drier conditions have led to a reduced length of growing season with detrimental effects on crops. In southern Africa, longer dry seasons and more uncertain rainfall are prompting adaptation measures.
  • Sea-level rise and human development are together contributing to losses of coastal wetlands and mangroves and increasing damage from coastal flooding in many areas...

2014:
In many regions, changing precipitation or melting snow and ice are altering hydrological systems, affecting water resources in terms of quantity and quality (medium confidence)...
Many terrestrial, freshwater, and marine species have shifted their geographic ranges, seasonal activities, migration patterns, abundances, and species interactions in response to ongoing climate change (high confidence)...
Based on many studies covering a wide range of regions and crops, negative impacts of climate change on crop yields have been more common than positive impacts (high confidence)...
At present the world-wide burden of human ill-health from climate change is relatively small compared with effects of other stressors and is not well quantified...
Impacts from recent climate-related extremes, such as heat waves, droughts, floods, cyclones, and wildfires, reveal significant vulnerability and exposure of some ecosystems and many human systems to current climate variability (very high confidence)...
Climate-related hazards exacerbate other stressors, often with negative outcomes for livelihoods, especially for people living in poverty (high confidence)...
Violent conflict increases vulnerability to climate change (medium evidence, high agreement)...
The increase in confidence for farm yields and climate-related extremes alone makes the 2014 report significantly more blunt, in my view. Even the way the two are laid out is instructive: the 2007 report's findings are spread out over three pages, while 2014's are all grouped together under bolded headings. At the very minimum, they are at least equally stark.

On future effects of climate change:

These reports are fairly dissimilar, but let me choose the most similar samples I can find.

2007:



2014:
Five integrative reasons for concern (RFCs) provide a framework for summarizing key risks across sectors and regions. First identified in the IPCC Third Assessment Report, the RFCs illustrate the implications of warming and of adaptation limits for people, economies, and ecosystems. They provide one starting point for evaluating dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system. Risks for each RFC, updated based on assessment of the literature and expert judgments, are presented below and in Assessment Box SPM.1 Figure 1. All temperatures below are given as global average temperature change relative to 1986-2005 (“recent”).
(1) Unique and threatened systems: Some unique and threatened systems, including ecosystems and cultures, are already at risk from climate change (high confidence). The number of such systems at risk of severe consequences is higher with additional warming of around 1°C. Many species and systems with limited adaptive capacity are subject to very high risks with additional warming of 2°C, particularly Arctic-sea-ice and coral-reef systems. 
(2) Extreme weather events: Climate-change-related risks from extreme events, such as heat waves, extreme precipitation, and coastal flooding, are already moderate (high confidence) and high with 1°C additional warming (medium confidence). Risks associated with some types of extreme events (e.g., extreme heat) increase further at higher temperatures (high confidence). 
(3) Distribution of impacts: Risks are unevenly distributed and are generally greater for disadvantaged people and communities in countries at all levels of development. Risks are already moderate because of regionally differentiated climate-change impacts on crop production in particular (medium to high confidence). Based on projected decreases in regional crop yields and water availability, risks of unevenly distributed impacts are high for additional warming above 2°C (medium confidence). 
(4) Global aggregate impacts: Risks of global aggregate impacts are moderate for additional warming between 1-2°C, reflecting impacts to both Earth’s biodiversity and the overall global economy (medium confidence). Extensive biodiversity loss with associated loss of ecosystem goods and services results in high risks around 3°C additional warming (high confidence). Aggregate economic damages accelerate with increasing temperature (limited evidence, high agreement) but few quantitative estimates have been completed for additional warming around 3°C or above. 
(5) Large-scale singular events: With increasing warming, some physical systems or ecosystems may be at risk of abrupt and irreversible changes. Risks associated with such tipping points become moderate between 0-1°C additional warming, due to early warning signs that both warm-water coral reef and Arctic ecosystems are already experiencing irreversible regime shifts (medium confidence). Risks increase disproportionately as temperature increases between 1-2°C additional warming and become high above 3°C, due to the potential for a large and irreversible sea-level rise from ice sheet loss. For sustained warming greater than some threshold,44 near-complete loss of the Greenland ice sheet would occur over a millennium or more, contributing up to 7m of global mean sea-level rise.
Again, I think the 2014 report comes in with higher confidence, but really they aren't that much different. Overall, I judge these two are fairly close in terms of level of alarm. The big difference comes in terms of adaptation and mitigation, to which the 2014 report pays much more attention.

2 comments:

  1. The reason most people and scientists on planet earth can’t figure why the climate changes is because their analyzing is based an isolated earth; not looking at earth as part of a larger whole solar system - universe. Climate change is a galactic problem and cannot be solved on a global scale. Don’t believe the government hoax about man made global changes. Here is the smoking guns (see below) that the government, through NASA, is well aware of, that is never mentioned. Yes, there are huge changes going on in our climate. These changes are taking place on every planet in our solar system on even larger scales. If all planets in our solar system are undergoing unprecedented weather changes, why would earth be the exception? The reality is, changes on this proportion cannot be eradicated by man. Our government is using these changes to tax and control us. I am not advocated we need not be better stewards of our planet, but the changes occurring are far far beyond our control.

    Solar activity is the highest it has been in 8000 years. Dr. Sami Solanki – Max Planck Institute – Germany
    We are moving to High energy region of our solar system. – As the sun continues to get hotter and hotter from the high energy region it is affection all the planets.

    Mercury:
    NASA 2008 – the magnetosphere and magnetic field of Mercury during the MESSENGER flyby appeared to be different from the Mariner 10 observation. MESSENGER found the planets magnetic field was generally quiet but showed several signatures indicating significant pressure growing within the magnetosphere.
    Mail Online News – May 1, 2009
    Mysterious Mercury – probe reveals magnetic twisters and mammoth crater on hottest planet – which means that massive new magnetic fields are appearing over certain spots of Mercury that were never there before.

    Venus:
    Venus had a 2,500 % increase in infrared green glow from 1978-1999. SRI International by Alice Resnick 1999 the green glow is the indication of oxygen this is growling on the planet.

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  2. The reason most people and scientists on planet earth can’t figure why the climate changes is because their analyzing is based an isolated earth; not looking at earth as part of a larger whole solar system - universe. Climate change is a galactic problem and cannot be solved on a global scale. Don’t believe the government hoax about man made global changes. Here is the smoking guns (see below) that the government, through NASA, is well aware of, that is never mentioned. Yes, there are huge changes going on in our climate. These changes are taking place on every planet in our solar system on even larger scales. If all planets in our solar system are undergoing unprecedented weather changes, why would earth be the exception? The reality is, changes on this proportion cannot be eradicated by man. Our government is using these changes to tax and control us. I am not advocated we need not be better stewards of our planet, but the changes occurring are far far beyond our control.

    Solar activity is the highest it has been in 8000 years. Dr. Sami Solanki – Max Planck Institute – Germany
    We are moving to High energy region of our solar system. – As the sun continues to get hotter and hotter from the high energy region it is affection all the planets.

    Mars:
    Rapid appearance of clouds and ozone which it never had before - Don Savage – NASA - Official Hubble Space Telescope.
    Mars having per NASA “Global Warming” – up 50% erosion of Ice Features in ONE year - - Breitt., Robert Roy – Mars Ski Report 2001
    No cars on Mars to account for “Global Warming”
    Jun 24 and Sep - 2001 Martian Global Super storms which if it had appeared on earth would have wiped out all life.

    Jupiter :
    grows a “Plasma Torus” which was not visible in 1974. This is a ring of plasma circling Jupiter
    1995 the Plasma Torus increases in density by over 200% - Dr Joacmin Saur much stronger than ever expected.
    Disappearance of Jupiter White Ovals- this will cause 18 degrees of “Global Warming” on Jupiter in only 10 years. Dr. Philp Marcus
    New Science Space Jan 23,2008 – Jupiter ‘s raging thunder storms a sign of global upheaval Jupiter’s moon Io’s Ionosphere!000% higher than in 1973 -Dr Lewis Frank NASA – lono are the charged particle in the ionosphere
    Surface of Io got to over 3 times hotter that Mercury surface, or 200% hotter than own surface surprised scientist, they cannot explain – Dr Alfred McEwen
    Europa – Stat lite of Jupiter – “Much brighter than expected” 2003 – Dr Melissa McGrath
    Ganymede – satellite of Jupiter “ 200% brighter than normal and some areas 700% than normal
    1000% increase in atrophic density from 1975

    Saturn-
    1981 to 1993 Plasma Torus grows 1000% denser – NASA, plus new huge Plasma Torus is now surrounding Saturn
    1995 – Aurorae first seen on Saturn polar regions
    2004 huge X-ray emissions from Saturn are 18.5 degrees north – Dr Jan Uew-Ness – Germany
    NASA - March 21, 2011 Massive Serpent Strom Rages across Saturn’ northern Hemisphere. – Which is about 100,000 miles Storm is still going on.
    Oct 25, 2012 UPS – NASA
    Using ;inferred technology, spacecraft discover that the storm has sent the temperature on Saturn’s atmosphere soring 150 degrees Fahrenheit. The temperature spike is so extreme it is almost unbelievable – Hirschman at NASA
    Saturn has 110 times more Ethylene Gas than though possible.

    Uranus:
    Featureless as a Cue Ball in Voyager 2 Photos – 1986
    Uranus 1999 –Hi by Huge Storm and Really Big Big Changes- Dr Eric Karkosschka
    Uranus starting to get brighter and glowing

    Neptune:
    1999 relatively few bright clouds. 1996-2012 Massive change - 40% Brighter

    Pluto:
    “Global Warming” on Pluto – 300% increase in atmospheric pressure due to melting dry ice. – Dr James Elliot NASA

    Also Galactic Dust on increase

    Are there any of the NASA scientists listed above who doesn’t know what they are talking about

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