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Latest IPCC report makes energy transition and reforestation in NSW more urgent than ever

The latest IPCC report shows that NSW must do more to cut emissions to minimise the impacts climate change is having on nature and communities. 

“NSW must be much more ambitious on a range of fronts to ensure we play our role in the global fight to save species and communities from the ravages of climate change,” Nature Conservation Council CEO Chris Gambian said. 

“The latest report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is alarming, but it does show that the choices we make today and what we do over the next 10 can make a massive difference. [1] 

“But we have no time to waste. This report shows that government timeframes for decarbonising the economy are far too slow. 

“Currently, the NSW Government aims to make the state carbon neutral by 2050. We can’t wait that long — by then the horse will have bolted. 

“We need to cut climate emissions in NSW by three-quarters by 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2035 to give nature and subsequent generations a shot at a safe, healthy future. 

“That means accelerating the shift from coal and gas to renewables. That means ending native forest logging. That means ending land clearing. That means launching a massive program of tree-planting across the state.” 

The latest IPCC report shows climate change is already pushing native species and ecosystems to the brink and threatening our most vulnerable communities. The report shows that future impacts will include: 

  • More extreme weather, including long, intense droughts and massive, destructive storms like those ravaging the east coast this week. 
  • More frequent and more intense bushfires like the 2019-20 Black Summer, which burned more than 5 million hectares, especially on the north and south coasts of NSW.  
  • The collapse of alpine and forest ecosystems.  
  • The loss of coastal ecosystems and human settlements from rising sea levels. 
  • Declining crop yields and livestock production. 
  • More human and wildlife deaths from heatwaves. 

REFERENCES 

[1] Climate Change 2022: Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability, IPCC,    

‘Atlas of human suffering’: More drought, fire and flood, less snow and coral, UN report says, SMH, 1-3-22 

Climate scientists warn global heating means Australia facing more catastrophic storms and floods, The Guardian Australia, 28-2-22  

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