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Analysis and Comment (41)

Extreme weather is more common than ever. EPA

How does the IPCC know climate change is happening?

Climate change is one of the few scientific theories that makes us examine the whole basis of modern society. It is a challenge that has politicians arguing, sets nations against each other, queries individual…
The IPCC’s latest report sets the record straight on science (again), but could be stronger on the economic case for climate action. EPA/Niels Ahlmann Olesen/AAP

New IPCC report: busting myths, both scientific and economic

The headline statements of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s new Synthesis Report – unequivocal climate change, almost certainly driven largely by humans, and an urgent need to cut emissions…
The IPCC is clear on the dangers of fossil fuels. Pete Markham

Stark IPCC climate report shows the time for talking is over

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is set to publish the “synthesis report” of its fifth assessment period, drawing on three individual working group reports already published on: the…
A green trade deal would encourage the development of renewable energy in big carbon emitters such as China. Kaj17/Flickr

Trans-Pacific Partnership threatens a green trade deal

Ten years on from the Australia-US Free Trade Agreement, Australia is entering another round of negotiations towards the new and controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership. In this Free Trade Scorecard series…
Renewable energy is an excellent way to hedge against the impacts of climate policies. Indigo Skies Photography/Flickr

Finally, some light relief for the Renewable Energy Target

The Australian government has just received a vitally important report to guide their decisions on the future of Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET). But it’s not the RET review report of the Coalition-appointed…
The Ross Sea: one of the places where sea ice extent is increasing. Brocken Inaglory/Wikimedia Commons

What is the paradox of increasing Antarctic sea ice really telling us?

This year could well see a new record set for the extent of Antarctic sea ice – hot on the heels of last year’s record, which in turn is part of a puzzling 33-year trend in increasing sea ice around Antarctica…
A record-breaking winter heatwave - which makes pretty nice weather for a dip. DAN HIMBRECHTS/AAPIMAGE

Winter heatwaves are nice … as extreme weather events go

If you’ve stepped outside at lunchtime in Sydney over the past few days, you’d be forgiven for thinking that it was more like early summer than the beginning of winter. On each of the past 23 days, the…
IPCC leaders release their climate mitigation report in Berlin - but governments already have one eye on next year’s UN climate summit. EPA/Joerg Carstensen

‘Censored’ IPCC summary reveals jockeying for key UN climate talks

In the wake of this month’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on ways to cut global greenhouse gas emissions, accusations began to fly in the media that the report had been censored…
Pollution on an industrial scale. SARIN KUNTHONG

Cutting emissions now makes business sense for industry

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Fifth Assessment Report tells us that CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions are continuing to rise and that, unchecked, climate change will likely…
Gas-fired industry to reduce emissions in the short-term. Jorge Franganillo

IPCC changes its tune on gas as way to mitigate climate change

The International Panel on Climate Change’s Working Group 3 report is a welcome outline of how to stem the tide of climate change. It illustrates a significant change in strategy, from a complete switch…
For the first time the IPCC has addressed the ethical, as well as technical, issues of reducing greenhouse emissions. EPA/How Hwee Young/AAP

IPCC: emissions cuts are about ethics as well as economics

The new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change shows that global greenhouse gas emissions have grown faster than ever over the last decade. Taking action to achieve the world’s goal…
No vote: despite activists' urgings, the 2009 Copenhagen climate talks were stymied by the threat of veto. EPA/HENNING BAGGER/AAP

Votes, not vetoes: a new way to cut a United Nations climate deal

Anyone who has watched in frustration as the United Nations repeatedly failed to secure a meaningful climate treaty could be forgiven for taking a rather glum view on this weekend’s report by the Intergovernmental…
How much green will it cost to go green? epsos.de

IPCC report shows Stern inflated climate change costs

How much does climate change cost? What will be the impact on our wallets? The latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Working Group II has concluded that global warming…
Coasts are at risk from rising seas, but that risk could be alleviated by coastal ecosystems such as mangroves. Sheep"R"Us/Flickr

How wetlands can help us adapt to rising seas

Instead of costly levees and seawalls, coastal ecosystems could offer an alternative way to protect Australia’s coastal communities from rising seas, saving money and storing carbon along the way. Sea…
Flooding as a result of wetter winters is set to continue. Steve Parsons/PA Archive

IPCC report: adapt to cope with climate change

Climate change is a serious threat to human safety and security according to the latest report from the UN’s International Panel on Climate Change. But also coming through loud and clear is that adaptation…
We know what’s in store – now it’s time to do something about it. AAP

The IPCC has spelled out the risks – now what do we do?

Despite the mounting evidence, there are still some who would deny the veracity of human-caused climate change and its potential to disrupt and harm our communities. Most dissenters rely on non-expert…
The largest impacts will occur in poorer and vulnerable populations. 'Collecting water' by UNAMID

Climate change and health: IPCC reports emerging risks, emerging consensus

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) Impacts volume of the Fifth Assessment Report will be released today. Here, three contributors to the health chapter explain the ideas and evidence…
It takes a lot of meetings to write a comprehensive summary of climate science. IPCC

Explainer: how are IPCC reports written?

Every day there seems to be more confusing (and sometimes downright misleading) news about climate change. Depending on what you read and whom you listen to, climate change is getting worse, or not happening…
We’ll need a lot more than sandbags in years to come. EPA/Facundo Arrizabalaga

What to expect from the latest IPCC impacts report

Senior scientists and government officials are meeting in Japan to finalise a new report on the impacts of climate change. It will be the first Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report in…
Rousing the Kraken: climate change could make life in the ocean much harder. By Mary Evans Picture Library/Alamy/Wikimedia Commons

IPCC preview: deep trouble brewing in our oceans

Scientists are meeting this week in Yokohama, Japan, to finalise and approve the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Working Group II – the part of the IPCC process that…
Why would more science make any difference to people who don’t care about science? Larry He's So Fine/Flickr

IPCC report will make no difference in culture of denial

This week’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report will be compendious, cautious, thorough and as authoritative as a scientific report can be. But it will not make much difference. In…
Dead science lives on, thanks to the Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change. Scott Beale

Adversaries, zombies and NIPCC climate pseudoscience

The warm start to Australian spring has been accompanied by a deluge of pseudoscience. Anti-vaccination campaigners and aliens made appearances, but the deluge was primarily climate pseudoscience in the…
IPCC reports are complex, but there are ways to break it down. Christian Guthier

Explainer: how to read an IPCC report

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the accepted global authority on climate change. It produces reports that are collectively agreed assessments of the scientific literature by leading…
Certainty about humanity’s influence on climate change has been steadily increasing. carnagenyc/Flickr

Lost in translation: confidence and certainty in climate science

In the lead up to the release next month of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC’s) Fifth Assessment Report we are exploring concepts of confidence and certainty in climate science. You…
Sometimes a piece of the puzzle won’t fit, but overall the picture is coming together. Dave Ginsberg

150 years and counting: confidence in climate science

In the lead up to the release next month of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC’s) Fifth Assessment Report we are exploring concepts of confidence and certainty in climate science. The…
Maybe humans aren’t causing climate change, and maybe penguins choose not to fly. Antarctica Bound/Flickr

Penguins can’t fly and humans are causing climate change: how scientists build theories

In the lead up to the release next month of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC’s) Fifth Assessment Report we are exploring concepts of confidence and certainty in climate science – beginning…
We have to get used to the idea that climate change doesn’t happen in a smooth line. thinboyfatter/flickr

Time to stop hiding behind warming trends

Dr Rajendra Pachauri, head of the IPCC, has reportedly acknowledged to Graham Lloyd of The Australian, that there is a “17-year pause in global temperature rises”, a fact that apparently has been suppressed…
Studies of prehistoric climate change in Victoria’s western lakes imply that future changes might not be smooth. Dacre Smith's painting of Lake Gnotuk, from Views of Victoria in the steps of von Guerard.

Rapid warming in SE Australia challenges plans to adapt gradually

Step changes in warming of a few tenths to 1°C can produce rapid changes in risks such as extreme heat and fire danger. Yet, adaptation-planning that follows the dominant model of smooth climate change…
When it comes to weather, scientists and the media have different understandings of risk. Ameel Khan

Spinning uncertainty? The IPCC extreme weather report and the media

The “reasonable person” would agree that disaster risk is best avoided. Under a changing climate, how exposed people are to risk and how socially and physically vulnerable they are affects how often disasters…

Columnists (1)

The end is nigh – don’t read all about it

The much anticipated latest summary of peer-reviewed climate science by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has finally been delivered. The jury, as they say, is unambiguously in, even…

Research and News (7)