The United Nations has been building support since 1990 for a universal agreement on climate change.
In 1988, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established by the UN and the World Meteorological Organisation to provide the world with a clear scientific view on climate change and its potential environmental and socio-economic impacts.
The IPCC’s fifth assessment report in November 2014 concluded:
“Human influence on the climate system is clear and growing, with impacts observed on all continents. If left unchecked, climate change will increase the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems.
“However, options are available to adapt to climate change and … ensure that the impacts of climate change remain within a manageable range, creating a brighter and more sustainable future.
“We have the means to limit climate change,” said R. K. Pachauri, Chair of the IPCC. “The solutions are many and allow for continued economic and human development. All we need is the will to change, which we trust will be motivated by knowledge and an understanding of the science of climate change.”
For further information see:
- Our climate – what are the effects of climate change?
- Our future – what will we choose?
- UN climate agreement aims for 1.5°C warming limit (Dec 2015)