The World Bank has released a new report examining the very-likelihood that the world will be 4˚C warmer by century’s end, and the headline of this post sums up its conclusion. Jim Yong Kim, the World Bank’s president, says he hopes the results “shock the world into action.”
According to the report, “we’re on track for a 4°C warmer world marked by extreme heat-waves, declining global food stocks, loss of ecosystems and biodiversity, and life-threatening sea level rise.” Which will result in an unstable world where the poor, the least able to adapt, will suffer, and food and labor shortages will throw the global economy into a tailspin.
Of course, we knew all of this already. We have for quite some time. But when a staid, beltway-friendly capitalist institution like the World Bank comes out firing like this, it gets people talking. And tweeting, obvs.
Shocking World Bank Climate Report: ‘A 4°C [7°F] World Can, And Must, Be Avoided’ To Avert ‘Devastating’ Impacts bit.ly/Xtbg9M
— Climate Progress (@climateprogress) November 19, 2012
World Bank Climate Report So Bad That Future is ‘Hard to Describe’ pbs.org/newshour/rundo…
— Christopher Mims (@mims) November 19, 2012
— Michael E. Mann (@MichaelEMann) November 19, 2012
(Climate scientist Michael Mann RTing WaPo climate wonk Brad Pumer)
The World Bank is tying poverty to ‘climate change’ bit.ly/TMvjYeAnd we wonder why international organizations are ineffective.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 19, 2012
(the Trump missing the point entirely, as is his wont)
— Al Gore (@algore) November 19, 2012
World Bank has a lot of coal plants to answer for, but they seem serious in fight to hold temp to 2 degrees climatechange.worldbank.org/sites/default/…
— Bill McKibben (@billmckibben) November 19, 2012
It’s a weird thing, right? To tweet some kind of apocalypse; the semi-discussion, the press-releasing of our thoughts of the end times. A bunch of us do it every day.
“A 4°C warmer world can, and must be, avoided – we need to hold warming below 2°C,” said Jim Yong Kim, though he didn’t take to Twitter.
And here, the AFP sums up the thrust of the report:
Issuing a call for action, the World Bank tied the future wealth of the planet — and especially developing regions — to immediate efforts to cut greenhouse gas emissions from sources such as energy production.
“The time is very, very short. The world has to tackle the problem of climate change more aggressively,” World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said … “We will never end poverty if we don’t tackle climate change. It is one of the single biggest challenges to social justice today.”
This is all somewhat strange, coming from the World Bank—but none of it’s wrong. Decarbonize or get toasty.