Climate Change Impact on India and World – International Reports, Key Observations, etc.

Crisis and sustainability in the face of climate change

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : IPCC

Mains level : Paper 3- Vulnerability to climate change and ways for adaptation

Context

The footprint of the Covid-19 pandemic across the sectors of the economy has instilled a new reckoning for resilience and sustainability on the economic, social and environmental (ESG) front.

IPCC reports suggest adaption for resilience

  • The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published its latest report on climate impacts, vulnerability and adaptation last month.
  • The report suggests that adaptation to climate impacts in the near to medium term can help communities and ecosystems become resilient against the threats from current and future levels of warming.
  •  Ecosystem-based adaptation, for instance, is recommended for taking care of communities and social well-being, while restoring forests, lands and marine ecosystems.
  • The report details the variability in projected climate impacts and the vulnerabilities that can be expected across regions the world over due to differences in the range of warming, geographical location, demographics and the unique biophysical, social and cultural contexts.
  • Cost-effective adaptation: It depends on a host of enablers on which global partnerships need to deliver.
  • Enablers include international cooperation, inclusive technology, financial flows, knowledge sharing and capacity building, with institutions and innovations to support policy development and on-ground implementation.

Gaps in the literature, acknowledge the uncertainties in climate science

  • The IPCC has been consistently drawing attention to the lack of adequate science from and on developing countries.
  • These countries have in turn been asking for the inclusion of what is broadly termed as “grey literature” or non-peer-reviewed literature in the IPCC process.
  • Good science encompasses the formal and the informal, theory and empiricism, the traditional along with the modern.
  • It relies on evolution through acknowledging the gaps and unknowns, the negatives and positives of past knowledge.
  • The understanding of adaptation finance, adaptation costing, and mapping of climate impacts and adaptation needs of communities in geographically remote locations, for instance, could improve with suitable sourcing of information.

Way forward

  • Sustainable development, inclusive of climate resilience, calls for an ensemble approach — one that places contextually appropriate emphasis on tackling climate change impacts and development needs in a world with growing challenges.
  • The pathway to be adopted is one of an integrated risk assessment approach, where solutions are interventions that impact the immediate, near and medium-term outcomes for developing economies.
  • Striking the right balance is at any time a choice driven as much by enablers (capabilities, lifestyles and values, financial flows, technical know-how) as by constraints (warming levels, poverty, inequality, lack of health and education).

Conclusion

The pandemic highlighted the need for balance in nature-people relationships, even as it tested the ability of the developing world.

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