Interview with Markku Rummukainen, IPCC, about the latest report

On August 9, the IPCC released the first results of its latest report. The Haga Initiative has interviewed Markku Rummukainen, Swedish representative in the IPCC and professor of Climatology at Lund University, about the latest findings.

What is the most important information in the report released by the IPCC?
- Climate change continues to increase. Sea levels rise, and ice sheets are melting even faster than before. The climate we are facing today appears increasingly unique in an expanding historical time perspective. The time to limit global warming to 1.5 or 2 degrees, is about to run out. There is now a clear connection between global warming and more extreme weather, not least heat waves and torrential rain around the world.

What is the difference from previous reports?
- The state of knowledge has been further strengthened. It is unequivocal that the ongoing heating is due to emissions. The link between climate change and extremes has been strikingly strengthened in recent years. Those certain changes will continue for a very long time after the temperature rise ceases is also emphasized, as well as the fact that there is so-called deep uncertainty about tipping points in the climate system. It is not possible to know at which heating level different tipping points occur. However, the risk increases with the degree of heating, and some may be reached even with fairly low heating.

What can we expect from the reports coming in February 2022?
- The current report presents the state of scientific knowledge about measurements and trends in the climate system, the climate system's processes, as well as climate models and climate scenarios. The next two reports present an updated state of knowledge regarding climate effects, adaptation, and vulnerability, as well as emission reduction. It includes knowledge of possible development paths, technical and nature-based solutions, supply and demand, financing, decision-making, institutions, and much more for several different sectors, and globally.

What is important for the business community to know in this report?
- There is knowledge about many aspects of climate change. But as more years have passed without declining global emissions, climate solutions are increasingly more urgent, partly to turn emissions increases into rapid reductions and partly to climate-proof communities and activities for climate effects, including more and more intense extremes. Solutions and - given that many solutions already exist - their faster execution is in demand.