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These pages and sections capture news of climate change and stories about the groundswell of climate action by governments, companies, cities, the UN and civil society around the globe. To provide feedback, email us at press@unfccc.int Photo©Naziha Mestaoui

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The report involving a dialogue with experts has been released on the 2013-2015 Review under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, which was ordered by governments to review the adequacy of their agreed goal to keep the global average temperature from rising beyond 2°C above pre-industrial levels and of the overall progress made towards this goal.

The full report, which can be seen on the UNFCCC website here, is the result of a face-to-face dialogue between over 70 experts and Parties to the UNFCCC.

The findings in the report are the views expressed by experts and Parties and do not take precedence over the 5th Assessment Report of the International Governmental Panel on Climate Change, which is the formal, government-accepted document on climate science.

The full report addresses the following: the adequacy of the long-term global goal in the light of the ultimate objective of the Convention, the overall progress made towards achieving the long-term global goal, and issues relating to a consideration of strengthening the long-term global goal, referencing various matters presented by the science, including in relation to a temperature rise of 1.5 °C.

Main Messages of the Report

The report summarizes its findings in 10 main messages, which need to be read in conjunction with the detailed analysis. These include:

  • A long-term global goal defined by a temperature limit serves its purpose well.
  • Limiting global warming to below 2 °C is still feasible and will bring about many co-benefits, but poses substantial technological, economic and institutional challenges.
  • This effort necessitates a radical transition, not merely a fine tuning of current trends.
  • The world is not yet on track to achieve the long-term global goal, but successful mitigation policies are known and must be scaled up urgently.
  • Assessing the adequacy of the long-term global goal implies risk assessments and value judgments not only at the global level, but also at regional and local levels.
  • Significant climate impacts are already occurring at the current level of global warming and additional magnitudes of warming will only increase the risk of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts.
  • The 2 °C limit should therefore be seen as a line that needs to be stringently defended. Less warming would be preferable and efforts should be made to push the defence line as low as possible.

Ultimate Objective of the UNFCCC

The ultimate objective of the UN climate change Convention is to stabilize greenhouse gas concentrations at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic (human induced) interference with the climate system. The objective, anchored in the 1992 Convention text, states that such a level should be achieved within a time-frame sufficient to allow ecosystems to adapt naturally to climate change, to ensure that food production is not threatened, and to enable economic development to proceed in a sustainable manner.

Image: IISD Reporting Services

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