IPCC circulates draft ocean and cryosphere report for final government review

GENEVA, June 14 – The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has circulated the Final Draft including the Summary for Policymakers (SPM) of the Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) to governments in the final stage of preparation before the IPCC considers the report for approval in September.

The report assesses the latest scientific literature addressing climate change and the ocean and the cryosphere – water in its solid state such as glaciers and ice sheets. It will add to knowledge on a range of topics from water supplies for people living in high-mountain areas to the risks of sea-level rise for coastal communities as well as other climate-related changes in the two systems that all people on Earth depend upon directly or indirectly.

“This report will provide valuable information about how climate change is affecting ocean, coastal, polar and mountain ecosystems,” said Hans-Otto Pörtner, Co-Chair of IPCC Working Group II. “It will also discuss how nature and society can respond to the risks this poses and achieve climate-resilient development.”

IPCC member governments are invited to submit comments on the Summary for Policymakers of the report to the IPCC from 14 June to 9 August. The IPCC will consider the Summary for Policymakers line by line at an approval session in Monaco from 20-23 September. Subject to approval, the report will be launched at a live-streamed press conference in Monaco on 25 September at 10:00 local time.

For more information contact:

IPCC Press Office, Email: ipcc-media@wmo.int Twitter: @IPCC_CH

Jonathan Lynn, +41 22 730 8066 or Werani Zabula, +41 22 730 8120


IPCC Working Group II Technical Support Unit:

Maike Nicolai, +49 471 4831 2445, Email: maike.nicolai@ipcc-wg2.awi.de, Twitter: @NicolaiM


Notes for editors


For the IPCC Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC), more than 100 scientists from more than 30 countries are assessing the latest scientific knowledge about the physical science basis and impacts of climate change on ocean, coastal, polar and mountain ecosystems, and the human communities that depend on them. Their vulnerabilities as well as adaptation capacities are also evaluated. Options for achieving climate-resilient development pathways will be presented. The SROCC is prepared under the joint scientific leadership of Working Group I and Working Group II, with operational support from the Working Group II Technical Support Unit. It will be launched in September 2019.

Report web page: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/srocc

About the IPCC

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is the UN body for assessing the science related to climate change. It was established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1988 to provide political leaders with periodic scientific assessments concerning climate change, its implications and risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation strategies. It has 195 member states.

The IPCC has three working groups: Working Group I, dealing with the physical science basis of climate change; Working Group I, dealing with impacts, adaptation and vulnerability; and Working Group III, dealing with the mitigation of climate change. It also has a Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories that develops methodologies for measuring emissions and removals.

Comprehensive scientific assessment reports are published every six to seven years; the latest, the Fifth Assessment Report, was completed in 2014. The next comprehensive assessment is due to be completed in 2022. The IPCC also publishes special reports on more specific issues between assessment reports.

In addition to the Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate, the current Sixth Assessment Cycle includes two more Special Reports:

  • Global Warming of 1.5°C, an IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty was launched in October 2018
  • Climate Change and Land, an IPCC special report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems, is due to be completed in August 2019

In May 2019, the IPCC also finalized the 2019 Refinement to the 2006 IPCC Guidelines on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories.

The contributions of the three IPCC Working Groups to the Sixth Assessment Report will be finalized in 2021. The concluding Synthesis Report is due in 2022.

For more information visit www.ipcc.ch.