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Scientific reporting by the Intergovermental panel on Climate Change IPCC delivers a critical input to governments in their efforts to respond to climate change. Governments gave another boost to IPCC reporting by recently requesting additional IPCC reports and deciding to incorporate the latest science as part of the global stocktake process of the Paris Agreement.

To strengthen the implementation of the Agreement, countries agreed to take stock of progress every five years. The precise inputs and modalities to do the global stocktake are now up for clarification. One important input - the IPCC reports - remains an essential and complex part of the equation and hence, at the latest UN climate change conference in Bonn, in one the key advisory bodies the SBSTA Chair co-hosted a special event with the IPCC to start an open dialogue on how to move forward.

The event held on May 18 was the first time countries could engage directly with the IPCC on how the IPCC reports can inform the global stocktake. More than 200 participants – representing countries, the IPCC, and observer organizations gathered to better clarify the how, what and when in terms of the reports informing the global stocktake.

The special event was set in motion with opening remarks by the SBSTA and IPCC Chairs. Presentations were also given by experts from the IPCC Working Groups and Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories, as well as the UNFCCC secretariat. This overview and new scientific information gave countries a good backdrop on the issue.

Building on the Successes of the IPCC Reports

Bearing in mind what the IPCC plans to produce and by when, countries offered their suggestions on how the reports could best be used in the global stocktake. 

For example, on the question of when, several voices supported aligning the IPCC synthesis reports in five year cycles to coincide with the year before the five year milestone of the global stocktake. On the what, several developing countries called for more analysis and scenarios to understand what is needed for the 1.5 aspirational temperature limit set out in Paris.

Some countries also called for more IPCC reporting to feed into the stocktake on adaptation metrics, regional level information, policy relevance and non-peer reviewed literature (grey literature). On the how, many participants suggested to incorporate best practices from previous stocktake or review experiences like in 2013-2015, using a structured expert dialogue.

The discussions were an important start to strengthen the outcomes from Paris because the global stocktake and the IPCC assessment reports will play a fundamental role in the integrity of the Paris agreement in the future.

To learn more about the SBSTA–IPCC special event visit this page.

 To watch the on-demand webcast, click here.

Pic by IISD

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