(Reuters News - September 27th, Friday, 2013)
STOCKHOLM: Leading climate scientists said on Friday they were more convinced than ever that humans are the main culprits for global warming, and predicted the impact from greenhouse gas emissions could linger for centuries.The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said in a report that a hiatus in warming this century, when temperatures have risen more slowly despite growing emissions, was a natural variation that would not last. It said the Earth was set for more heatwaves, floods, droughts and rising sea levels from melting ice sheets that could swamp coasts and low-lying islands as greenhouse gases built up in the atmosphere. The study, meant to guide governments in shifting towards greener energies, said it was "extremely likely", with a probability of at least 95 percent, that human activities were the dominant cause of warming since the mid-20th century. That was an increase from "very likely", or 90 percent, in the last report in 2007 and "likely", 66 percent, in 2001.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the study was a call for governments, many of which have been focused on spurring weak economies rather than fighting climate change, to work to reach a planned U.N. accord in 2015 to combat global warming. "The heat is on. Now we must act," he said of the report agreed in Stockholm after a week of talks between scientists and delegates from more than 110 nations.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the report was a wake-up call. "Those who deny the science or choose excuses over action are playing with fire," he said, referring to skeptics who question the need for urgent action.