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Climate Change

Interactive climate change map shows what a warmer world could look like

James I Davison's picture

As next month’s climate change conference in Copenhagen draws closer, we are undoubtedly going to see the amount of online discourse on the topic continue to increase. The latest example comes from the British government, which last week released an interactive map showing the possible impact of a global temperature rise of 4 degrees Celsius (7 degrees Fahrenheit). An article in the Guardian says the UK’s Met Office Hadley Centre produced the map based on a recent study that indicates, "such a 4C rise could come as soon as 2060 without urgent and serious action to reduce emissions." The newspaper also quotes the government’s chief scientist as saying that such a temperature shift would be “disastrous.”

Indeed, after exploring the map for just a few minutes, you see how devastating the consequences of a warmer planet might be. By zooming in and clicking and dragging with your mouse, you can navigate the map to see what could happen to different parts of the globe. Be sure to click on some of the plus signs, which give you a brief overview of an issue and the option to click to learn more and view sources of the research. The map, its creators say, displays the latest in peer-reviewed climate change research.

Looking around East Asia, you’ll see that some of the impacts listed include decrease in rice yield, extreme temperatures in population centers of eastern China, and flooding caused by rising sea levels.
 

Click on the map to interact. View full screen map here.


(Hat tip: From Poverty to Power blog.)

Climate Change Debate Heads Toward Resolution

Edith Wilson's picture

Pre-Copenhagen meeting in Barcelona earlier this yearThe ninth annual Development Marketplace Global Competition takes place in the midst of international debate and negotiation about how to mitigate the causes and adapt to the impacts of climate change.   The event is an integral part of the efforts on climate change within the World Bank Group and complements the Pilot Program on Climate Resilience, part of the Climate Investment Funds operated by the multilateral development banks.

A comprehensive, enforceable agreement on controlling global warming that doesn’t penalize developing nations is the goal of world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference to be held in Copenhagen on Dec. 7-18, 2009. Leading up to Copenhagen was the two-year Bali Action Plan agreed to in December 2007.

Adaptation and Mitigation – The Difference

Tom Grubisich's picture

There are two ways to respond to climate change – adaptation and mitigation.  The responses are not an either/or.  Both are necessary.  Adaptation, as early as the short term, can cushion people and places against the impacts of extreme weather, including drought, heat waves, flooding, and rising sea levels.  Mitigation, over time, can slow down manmade global warming, which has been identified by many scientific studies as a major cause of extreme weather.

Adaptation to Climate Tied to Development

Rasmus Heltberg's picture

How should adaptation to climate change be designed and funded? In the run-Storm pattern from satelliteup to the December 2009 Copenhagen climate negotiations there’s an international push to create new funding mechanisms for climate adaptation in developing countries. Given the complexity of climate change and limited experience in funding adaptation, we in the World Bank’s Social Development department decided to launch a study of the lessons from the DM2009 proposals. The proposals constitute a large and interesting database of proposed adaptation interventions. By studying the proposals as a group, we hope to gain insight into the global supply of adaptation innovations and project ideas, especially at the community level.

Our study considers how adaptation is conceptualized by suppliers of global adaptation interventions, what innovations for climate adaptation are proposed, and what kind of partnerships are put forward. We hope to contribute to policy discussions on how donors in the future can provide funding for community-based adaptation to climate change.

One of the discussions circulating among practitioners is how to orient funding for adaptation: Should development funds be considered separate from adaptation or are the two intertwined?    

Warm Welcome From Bank and DM2009 Sponsors

Edith Wilson's picture

The banner that's been unfurled across the facade of the World Bank's Main Complex in Washington, D.C., where DM2009 will be held Nov. 10-13, tells the story.  Are you registered?

From Kathy Sierra, Vice President of the World Bank’s Sustainable Development Network, and Sanjay Pradhan, Vice President of the World Bank Institute, comes this welcome to DM2009 finalists:

Development Marketplace 2009 couldn't have a more timely or significanSanjay Pradhant theme: “100 Ideas to Save the Planet and its people from the effects of a changing climate.” 

 

Managing risks from climate change will require not only one hundred but thousands of ideas from communities all over the world. Identifying the best of those ideas and reducing the time it takes to incubate, develop, and take them to scale will mean the difference between life and death to those people who live in the most vulnerable areas.

Online mapping tool gives view of forests in developing countries

James I Davison's picture

In July, biodiversity specialist and blogger Tony Whitten wrote a post about not abandoning old-fashioned conservation techniques as an important method of taking positive action on climate change. One of the important old-school mitigation methods, he wrote, lies in protecting the world’s forests through reforestation and avoiding further deforestation.

Accordingly, a big part of the ongoing climate change discussion includes reducing emissions through deforestation and degradation (known as REDD). And the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization now offers a tool to help monitor forests in developing countries. Using satellite imagery and other data, the Global Forest Resources Assessment Portal displays the information on an interactive map.

One Minute to Save the World

Kavita Watsa's picture

A friend sent me the link to “One Minute to Save the World”, an interesting campaign that is inviting one-minute films from people across the world who care about climate change. The organizers are offering £1,000 as first prize for the best film, and there’s a nice line-up of films already. The panel of judges is a qualified one, and includes a number of well-known names, from Shekhar Kapur, Oscar-winning director, to Franny Armstrong of The Age of Stupid fame.

Does migration also cause climate change?

Dilip Ratha's picture

Climate change has historically pushed people to migrate. There is widespread belief - fear? - that rising sea levels will force millions of people to migrate out of Bangladesh and Vietnam. If that happens, these migrants will spill into neighboring countries many of which are unlikely to be ready to take on migrants. Many will also sooner or later spread into far away countries in Australia, Asia, Europe and North America.

What concerns me more is that this simplistic viewpoint has very little factual analytical backing. Data on migration trends over time are bad. Data on climate change as they relate to migration are even worse. What is worse, migration experts are not necessarily talking to the experts on climate change.


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