IPCC report preview: Disastrous climate impacts to feature heavily

Geneva, Switzerland - The effects of climate change will receive more attention in the upcoming report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN's expert organization that sifts through and publishes climate science findings.

Some countries, like Chile, have climate change to thank for devastating droughts.
Some countries, like Chile, have climate change to thank for devastating droughts.  © IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

The IPCC's sixth major summary is coming February 28, and is expected to focus on several topics revealing the impacts of climate change.

The scope of effects is expected to include the immediate environmental shifts like rising sea levels and heftier tropical storms, as well as how different parts of the world will feel the changes in weather extremes.

This report will also likely look beyond just the environmental damages and risks, and highlight the impacts that are harder to measure with a weather satellite.

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The way poorer countries and regions bear the brunt of climate change will likely be featured strongly, as well as the focus on other factors, like mental well-being in the face of a changing world.

The White House has actually brought itself in line with IPCC findings. In a tweet, it also recognized another feature of the worsening situation: "Low-income communities and communities of color often suffer from the effects of climate change first, and most severely."

The secretary general of the World Meteorological Organization, Petteri Talaas, already asked for caution in how the report communicates its findings, because of how it can heavily impact people's mental health.

But the new report, no matter how grim it may be, is not just doomsaying.

You can think of the climate like a patient in a hospital: without knowing what is wrong, solutions might only be half-measures, so you need to fully understand what is amiss in order to find a permanent fix.

No matter how grim the IPCC's upcoming report is, it will also be like a map with clear directions on what would get us out of the climate crisis.

Cover photo: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

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