Preview of IPCC Working Group 2 Report

The Guardian reports that IPCC Working Group 2’s report — entitled Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, which is due to be debated by WG2 next week in Yokohama, Japan and released to the public on March 31 — underscores that developed countries will avoid the worst impacts of southeast asiaclimate change caused by rising carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere in the first half of the 21st century while developing countries in low latitudes, particularly those along the coast of Asia, will suffer the most.  Hundreds of millions of people living in cities in coastal east, south-east and south Asia are likely to lose their homes as flooding, famine and rising sea levels sweep the region.  Forecasting with “very high confidence,” WG2 says that “heat stress, extreme precipitation, inland and coastal flooding, as well as drought and water scarcity, pose risks in urban areas with risks amplified for those lacking essential infrastructure and services or living in exposed areas.”

But the draft report authors also warn that other climate change effects will be global and affect bothWG2 report cover developing and developed countries.  “Climate change throughout the 21st century will lead to increases in ill-health in many regions, as compared to a baseline without climate change,” the report states. “Examples include greater likelihood of injury, disease, and death due to more intense heatwaves and fires; increased likelihood of under-nutrition resulting from diminished food production in poor regions; and increased risks from food-borne and water-borne disease.”