Here we have two articles of different newspapers about the same topic, namely, climate change.
The first one appeared the 22th of Novembre, 2016, in the digital newspapaer IPS, Inter Press Service
Climate Doomsday – Another Step Closer
ROME, Oct 27 2016 (IPS) - Almost inadvertently, humankind is getting closer
everyday to the point of no-return towards what could be called the ‘climate
Now, globally averaged concentration of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the
atmosphere has surged again to new records in 2016… and will not dip below
pre-2015 levels for many generations.
The warning comes from the United Nations weather agency–the World
Meteorological Organization (WMO) and further
confirms the alarm of climate experts and world specialised organisations.
On the one hand, the WMO secretary-general, Petteri Taalas said that 2015
ushered in a new era of optimism and climate action with the Paris climate
change agreement. “But it will also make history as marking a new era of
climate change reality with record high greenhouse gas concentrations.”
“Without tackling carbon dioxide emissions, we cannot tackle climate change
and keep temperature increases to below 2 degrees Celcius above the
The weather agency had warned earlier this year that the Earth is already one degree Celsius hotter than
at the start of the 20th century, halfway to the critical two-degree threshold,
and that national climate change plans adopted so far may not be enough to
avoid a three-degree temperature rise.
CO2 levels had previously reached the 400 parts per million barrier for
certain months of the year and in certain locations “but never before on a
global average basis for the entire year.” ....
The 400 parts per million threshold is of great symbolic importance,” said the previous WMO secretary-general Michel Jarraud in 2014. “It should
serve as yet another wakeup call about the constantly rising levels of
greenhouse gases which are driving climate change and acidifying our oceans.”
This triggered droughts in tropical regions and reduced the capacity of “sinks” like forests,
vegetation and the oceans to absorb CO2.
These sinks currently absorb about half of CO2 emissions but there is a
risk that they may become saturated, which would increase the fraction of
emitted carbon dioxide which stays in the atmosphere, according to the Greenhouse
Carbon Dioxide Remains For Thousands of Years
The danger is clear: for thousands of year’s carbon dioxide remains in the atmosphere, trapping heat and causing the earth to warm further. The lifespan of carbon dioxide in the oceans is even longer. It is also the single most important greenhouse gas emitted by human activities.
On the other hand, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) says that the droughts and floods beating down on communities in many parts of the world are linked to the current El Niño, which was expected to affect up 60 million people already by last July.
“In some areas, including in North Eastern Brazil, Somali, Ethiopia, Kenya and Namibia, the El Niño effects are coming on the back of years of severe and recurrent droughts. It is impossible for households that rely on the land for food and farm labour to recover, especially when the land is degraded,” says in this regards the UNCCD executive secretary, Monique Barbut.
What’s more, Barbut adds, these conditions do not just devastate families and destabilise communities. When they are not attended to urgently, they can become a push factor for migration, and end with gross human rights abuses and long-term security threats.
“We have seen this before – in Darfur following four decades of droughts and desertification and, more recently, in Syria, following the long drought of 2007-2010.”
It is “tragic to see a society breaking down when we can reduce the vulnerability of communities through simple and affordable acts such as restoring the degraded lands they live on, and helping countries to set up better systems for drought early warning and to prepare for and manage drought and floods,” according to Barbut.
Agriculture Accounts for One-Fifth of Total Emissions
For its part, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) alerted that the rapid change in the world’s climate is translating into more extreme and frequent weather events, heat waves, droughts and sea-level rise.
The impacts of climate change on agriculture and the implications for food security are already alarming – they are the subjects of this report, according to FAO director general José Graziano da Silva.
A major finding is that there is an urgent need to support smallholders in adapting to climate change. Farmers, pastoralists, fisher-folk and community foresters depend on activities that are intimately and inextricably linked to climate – and these groups are also the most vulnerable to climate change.
“They will require far greater access to technologies, markets, information and credit for investment to adjust their production systems and practices to climate change.”
Unless action is taken now to make agriculture more sustainable, productive and resilient, climate change impacts will seriously compromise food production in countries and regions that are already highly food-insecure, Graziano da Silva alerts...
According to FAO’s director general, it will also affect food availability by reducing the productivity of crops, livestock and fisheries, and hinder access to food by disrupting the livelihoods of millions of rural people who depend on agriculture for their incomes.
Climate Change Will Not Be Dangerous for a Long Time
By Matt Ridley on November 27, 2015The climate change debate has been polarized into a simple dichotomy. Either global warming is “real, man-made and dangerous,” as Pres. Barack Obama thinks, or it’s a “hoax,” as Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe thinks. But there is a third possibility: that it is real, man-made and not dangerous, at least not for a long time.
This “lukewarm” option has been boosted by recent climate research, and if it is right, current policies may do more harm than good. For example, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and other bodies agree that the rush to grow biofuels, justified as a decarbonization measure, has raised food prices and contributed to rainforest destruction. Since 2013 aid agencies such as the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation, the World Bank and the European Investment Bank have restricted funding for building fossil-fuel plants in Asia and Africa; that has slowed progress in bringing electricity to the one billion people who live without it and the four million who die each year from the effects of cooking over wood fires.
In 1990 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was predicting that if emissions rose in a “business as usual” way, which they have done, then global average temperature would rise at the rate of about 0.3 degree Celsius per decade (with an uncertainty range of 0.2 to 0.5 degree C per decade). In the 25 years since, temperature has risen at about 0.1 to 0.2 degree C per decade, depending on whether surface or satellite data is used. The IPCC, in its most recent assessment report, lowered its near-term forecast for the global mean surface temperature over the period 2016 to 2035 to just 0.3 to 0.7 degree C above the 1986–2005 level. That is a warming of 0.1 to 0.2 degree C per decade, in all scenarios, including the high-emissions ones.
At the same time, new studies of climate sensitivity—the amount of warming expected for a doubling of carbon dioxide levels from 0.03 to 0.06 percent in the atmosphere—have suggested that most models are too sensitive. The average sensitivity of the 108 model runs considered by the IPCC is 3.2 degrees C. As Pat Michaels, a climatologist and self-described global warming skeptic at the Cato Institute testified to Congress in July, certain studies of sensitivity published since 2011 find an average sensitivity of 2 degrees C.
Such lower sensitivity does not contradict greenhouse-effect physics. The theory of dangerous climate change is based not just on carbon dioxide warming but on positive and negative feedback effects from water vapor and phenomena such as clouds and airborne aerosols from coal burning. Doubling carbon dioxide levels, alone, should produce just over 1 degree C of warming. These feedback effects have been poorly estimated, and almost certainly overestimated, in the models.
The last IPCC report also included a table debunking many worries about “tipping points” to abrupt climate change. For example, it says a sudden methane release from the ocean, or a slowdown of the Gulf Stream, are “very unlikely” and that a collapse of the West Antarctic or Greenland ice sheets during this century is “exceptionally unlikely.”
If sensitivity is low and climate change continues at the same rate as it has over the past 50 years, then dangerous warming—usually defined as starting at 2 degrees C above preindustrial levels—is about a century away. So we do not need to rush into subsidizing inefficient and land-hungry technologies, such as wind and solar or risk depriving poor people access to the beneficial effects of cheap electricity via fossil fuels.
As the upcoming Paris climate conference shows, the world is awash with plans, promises and policies to tackle climate change. But they are having little effect. Ten years ago the world derived 87 percent of its primary energy from fossil fuels; today, according the widely respected BP statistical review of world energy, the figure is still 87 percent. The decline in nuclear power has been matched by the rise in renewables but the proportion coming from wind and solar is still only 1 percent.
Getting the price of low-carbon energy much lower will do the trick. So we should spend the coming decades stepping up research and development of new energy technologies. Many people may reply that we don’t have time to wait for that to bear fruit, but given the latest lukewarm science of climate change, I think we probably do.
Matt Ridley writes a weekly column in The Times of London and writes regularly for The Wall Street Journal. He was elected to the House of Lords in February 2013. He declares a relevant interest in income derived from leasing land for farming, coal mining and wind power.
usher in: marcar el inicio. E.g.This period ushered in the first era of mass migrations
greenhouse gas: gases de efecto invernadero
hoax: engaño, bulo
lukewarm: tibio, indeciso, poco entusiasta
rainforest: bosque tropical
the point of no return
wake up call. E.g: It was a wake up call for me when I failed my exam.
dip: bajar, sumergir, disminuir
1. What does the first article mean by "climatedoomsday"?
2. Which is the tukewarm option of the second article?
3. Describe the effects of the climate change accordig to the first article and name the main differences with the second one
4. How does this affect the problem of the knowledge?