by A. Watts, Mar 25, 2023 in WUWT
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published the final part of its sixth assessment report (AR6) on Monday, March 20. Predictably, the media rushed to repeat the claims made in the report with their own scary, woefully overwrought, headlines. Here is a sample: The Washington Post – World is on brink of catastrophic warming, U.N. climate change report says; NBC News – Now or never: One of the biggest climate reports ever shows time is running out; The Guardian – Scientists deliver ‘final warning’ on climate crisis: act now or it’s too late; and finally Inside Climate News, with inarguably the worst headline New IPCC Report Shows the ‘Climate Time Bomb Is Ticking,’ Says UN Secretary General António Guterres.
Each of mainstream media outlets predict that “climate doom” is just around the corner, and they’re all wrong.
The reason? The newest IPCC report laments the fact that Earth will soon pass the 1.5°C level of temperature rise, seen in the projection in Figure 1. The current extrapolation is to reach 1.5°C by April 2035.
Based on that projection, the IPCC and the media predict very bad things will happen if we don’t “act now before it’s too late.” The most recent report in the AR6 series contains no new information, rather it reiterates the warnings made the physical science portion of the report issued in the summer of 2021, which also mentioned approaching 1.5°C.
Interestingly, the “before it’s too late” language has been used since 2005, when worry about just 1°C was the big doomsday news:
NASA scientist Jim Hansen introduced the “too late” language about climate change in 2005, arguing that “We have to stabilize emissions of carbon dioxide within a decade, or temperatures will warm by more than one degree [C]… we don’t have much time left”.