Global Warming

Learn about the science and impacts of global warming from our scientists and experts—and explore the solutions we have at hand to address this critical issue.


Subscribe to our Global Warming feed

Latest Global Warming Posts

Photo: Flickr / Irene / Creative Commons license CC-BY-NC 2.0

Heat Extremes at 1.5°C and 2°C Warming

, senior climate scientist

A key feature of the new IPCC report is its look into how climate change impacts are likely to be different at 1.5°C and 2°C warming above pre-industrial levels. A comparative look at heat extremes at these two warming levels is among the topics covered. The implications of these kind of projected changes – from adverse effects on our health and safety, to creating pre-conditions for large wildfires – are not difficult to envision after the devastating heat waves of 2018.

Read more >

Photo: Flickr / Irene / Creative Commons license CC-BY-NC 2.0
Bookmark and Share

North Carolina Army National Guardsmen and local emergency services assist with evacuation efforts in Fayetteville, N.C., Oct. 08, 2016. Heavy rains caused by Hurricane Matthew led to flooding as high as five feet in some areas.

What a Difference 0.5°C Makes! Or, How a Seemingly Small Amount of Global Warming can Lead to a lot More Rain

, climate scientist

The soon-to-be released Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C (IPCC 1.5) assesses, among other things, the impacts that could be avoided if global warming is kept to 1.5°C instead of 2°C, and the ways we can limit some of the worst impacts of climate change and adapt to the ones that are unavoidable. Let us pause and think for a moment about this business of 1.5°C and 2°C, because 0.5°C just seems like such a small difference. Why so much discussion about this seemingly small difference in global temperature? Read more >

Bookmark and Share

Coast Guard Shallow-Water Response Boat Team 3 crew members and members of the North Carolina National Guard assist residents of Old Dock, North Carolina, evacuate after flooding forced them from their homes in the wake of Hurricane Florence. Photo: Chief Petty Officer Stephen Kelly

Seven Things You Should Know About the IPCC 1.5°C Special Report and its Policy Implications

, Policy Director and Lead Economist, Climate & Energy

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is soon going to release an important report to help inform global efforts to limit climate change. The special report details the impacts of a global average temperature increase of 1.5°C relative to 2°C above pre-industrial levels, and pathways to limit temperature increase to that level. Governments of the world have come together this week in Incheon, South Korea to negotiate and agree on the report’s Summary for Policymakers, which is based on the underlying science in the final IPCC report. The summary is expected to be released on Monday morning in South Korea (late on Sunday night here on the US east coast).

Read more >

State Department photo
Bookmark and Share

California State Capitol
Photo: Rafał Konieczny CC-BY-SA-4.0 (Wikimedia)

New California Laws Address Climate Change—Some Bills Fall Short

, Western states policy manager

It’s Fall. That means crisp morning air, dwindling sunlight, and a chance to take stock of legislative victories and setbacks in California, as Governor Brown has now signed or vetoed the last of the bills sent to his desk this year.

As always, the progress we make in Sacramento is not only improving Californians’ quality of life, but also keeping momentum going for other states and countries. Many of the gains we make in clean technologies, for example, are reducing costs and proving solutions at scale, charting a course from which others can learn.

Read more >

Office of Governor Brown
Bookmark and Share

Experts Expose Hot Air in Fossil Fuel Companies’ Climate Risk Reporting

, climate accountability campaign manager

Last week, I participated in the 2nd Conference on Fossil Fuel Supply and Climate Policy at the University of Oxford in England. It was an exciting opportunity to discuss policies and actions aimed at limiting the supply of coal, oil, and natural gas with academic researchers, civil society leaders, and other experts from across the globe. Along with my UCS colleague Peter Frumhoff, I organized a panel on “Well Below 2°C Reporting by Major Fossil Energy Companies: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.” Since the 2015 adoption of the Paris climate agreement, companies such as Chevron, ExxonMobil, and Royal Dutch Shell have begun to publish reports in response to mounting investor demands that they disclose their plans for a world in which global temperature increase is kept well below two degrees Celsius (2°C) above pre-industrial levels. Panelists looked at climate risk reporting by major investor-owned oil and gas companies from legal, shareholder, scientific, and advocacy perspectives.

Read more >

©corlaffra/Shutterstock.com
Bookmark and Share