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Row over IPCC report as nations ‘try to hide lack of climate change’

September 27, 2013

Article written by Robert Mendick for The Telegraph.

Scientists working on a landmark UN report on climate change to be published this week are at loggerheads over their explanation for why the earth’s surface temperature has stopped rising as rapidly as they previously predicted.

The behind-the-scenes wrangling is likely to cast a shadow over the publication on Friday of the 2,000-page report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

The report is still in a draft version and will be finalised over the next five days with heated discussion centring on how to explain the fact that since 1998 the earth’s temperature has barely risen.

It is claimed some governments have even tried to intervene to remove references to the 15 year climate change ‘hiatus’ or ‘pause’.

The report – the fifth report by the IPCC and the first in five years – is hugely influential because its conclusions serve as the scientific basis for UN negotiations on curbing emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases. A global climate treaty is supposed to be adopted in 2015.

A leaked copy of an earlier draft of the report, seen by The Telegraph, will insist that the likelihood that global warming exists and that its cause is man-made has risen from 90 per cent certainty to 95 per cent certainty.

About the Fifth Assessment Report (AR5)

The AR5 has been under preparation for six years and consists of the contributions by the three WGs of the IPCC and a Synthesis Report. The Panel will consider the WG II contribution dealing with Climate change impacts, adaptation and vulnerability in March 2014 in Yokohama, Japan, and the WG III contribution on Mitigation of climate change in April 2014 in Germany. A Synthesis Report of all three WG volumes is expected to be finalised in October 2014 in Copenhagen, Denmark. 

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