UN body underplayed climate change: Scientists

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London, Apr 3 (UNI) UN's top climate panel which won the Nobel prize for its efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change has seriously underplayed the problem, leading scientists said.

Reducing global emissions of carbon dioxide over the coming century will be more challenging than society has been led to believe by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), according to a commentary entitled ''Dangerous Assumptions''.

Roger Pielke Jr, University of Colorado, Prof Tom Wigley, National Centre for Atmospheric Research and Christopher Green of McGill University, Quebec, argued that the IPCC, the pre-eminent body engaged in crystal-ball gazing about future climates, has sent out the wrong signals about the need for new technology to curb emissions.

The IPCC plays a ''risky game in assuming that spontaneous advances in technological innovation will carry most of the burden of achieving future emissions reductions,'' the authors wrote.

By assuming continuous improvement in technology, the IPCC has had the paradoxical effect of underplaying the dire need to develop radical new, clean and efficient energy technologies, they added.

Recent changes in emissions per unit of energy consumed already were higher than those predicted by the IPCC because of rapid economic development, the Daily Telegraph quoted Dr Pielke Jr as saying. In Asia, for instance, the demands of more energy-intensive economies are being met with conventional fossil-fuel, he said.

''Not only is this reduction unlikely to happen under current policies, but we are moving in the opposite direction right now. We believe these kinds of assumptions in the analysis blind us to reality and could potentially distort our ability to develop effective policies,'' he added.


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