PLEDGE NOW
Climate Change Countdown

An urgent call to act on climate.  A top UN panel says we have just 15 years to avoid calamity.

Activists of the international environmentalist organization Greenpeace pose with posters in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, April 13, 2014, to support clean energy. After a one week meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in Berlin the final document which was  released on Sunday said that a global shift to renewable energy from fossil fuels like oil and coal are required to avoid potentially devastating sea level rise, flooding, droughts and other impacts of warming. (AP)

Activists of the international environmentalist organization Greenpeace pose with posters in front of the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, April 13, 2014, to support clean energy. After a one week meeting of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in Berlin the final document which was released on Sunday said that a global shift to renewable energy from fossil fuels like oil and coal are required to avoid potentially devastating sea level rise, flooding, droughts and other impacts of warming. (AP)

The climate change warnings are getting louder.  More urgent.  Yesterday in Berlin, a big global panel delivered the latest.  We are not doing enough to head off calamitous change.  And the time frame remaining to avert the risk is closing in.  Just fifteen years now to change course, or face a heavy price.  The upside, said the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, is that we know what to do and how to do it.  The question is when and whether we will.  Fifteen years is not that long.  This hour On Point:  spelling out in black and white how close we are to the edge on climate change, and what it will take to pull back.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Gautam Naik, science and environment reporter at The Wall Street Journal.

 Robert Stavins, lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change United Nations report. Economist and expert on climate agreements at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. Director of the Harvard Environmental Economics program.

Leon Clarke, lead author of section of the IPCC UN report on the switch from fossil fuels to clean energy. Senior scient at the University of Maryland’s Joint Global Research Institute.

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: U.N. Climate Change Report Says Worst Scenarios Can Still Be Avoided — “According to the report, global greenhouse-gas emissions have risen more rapidly between 2000 and 2010 than in each of the three previous decades. The global economic crisis of 2007 and 2008 temporarily reduced emissions but didn’t change the trend, the report says.”

NPR: Climate Change Adjustments Must Be Fast And Major, U.N. Panel Says — “There’s an international target to control climate change: keeping the global temperature rise to just 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels — that’s 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit. TheIntergovernmental Panel on Climate Change now says it’s technically possible to meet that goal. But doing so will require rapid, large-scale shifts in energy production and use.”

The Economist: In the balance — “Dividing up the effects of climate change in this fashion leads to different ideas about how to respond. Defending low-lying cities against a rising sea level is difficult and expensive, and it is impossible to adapt to ocean acidification. These problems would best be dealt with (if at all) by attacking the cause: ie, by cutting carbon-dioxide emissions.”

Read The IPCC Draft Report Summary, “Climate Change 2014: Mitigation of Climate Change”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Jul 1, 2015
In this June 26, 2015, photo, President Barack Obama speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington. The Obama administration will propose requiring overtime pay for workers who earn nearly $1,000 per week, three individuals familiar with the plan said Monday, June 29. (AP)

Five million workers may qualify for overtime pay. We’ll look at the plan and the pushback.

Jul 1, 2015
In this file photo, a statue stands at the entrance to the women-only Taconic Correctional Facility in Bedford Hills, N.Y., Wednesday, March 28, 2012.  (AP)

Babies born in prison. The numbers are growing. What’s best for baby? We’ll take a closer look.

RECENT
SHOWS
Jun 30, 2015
In this image provided by NASA/JSC, astronauts Steven L. Smith and John M. Grunsfeld are photographed during an extravehicular activity (EVA) during the December 1999 Hubble servicing mission of STS-103, flown by Discovery. The Hubble Space Telescope, one of NASA'S crowning glories, marks its 25th anniversary on Friday, April 24, 2015.

Global plans for outer space. We’ll look around the world at who has what agendas for out there.

 
Jun 30, 2015
People stand in a queue to use an ATM outside a closed bank, next to a sign on the plant, bottom right, reading ''NO'' in Athens, Tuesday. It's crunch time for Greece, with the European part of its international bailout expiring Tuesday. (Thanassis Stavrakis/AP)

Greece closes its banks as debt negotiations reach a crisis point. We hear the latest on the debt crisis and its threat to the Eurozone.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Election 2016: Who Exactly Is Running For President?
Tuesday, Jun 30, 2015

Who is running for President, anyway? We attempt to help you figure it out.

More »
4 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: June 19, 2015
Friday, Jun 19, 2015

Why our broadcast changed in different markets this week, and a closer look at a puppet theatre vandalism in rural Norway. (Really).

More »
Comment
 
Quick Note On Rebroadcasting Today
Thursday, Jun 18, 2015

A quick note regarding today’s shifting schedule of broadcasts.

More »
2 Comments