SINGAPORE, Oct 21 – The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) opened a meeting on Monday to draft the outline of the Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Report, which will provide policymakers in 2022 with the most up-to-date scientific information related to climate change.
The Synthesis Report will integrate the findings of all the reports that the IPCC is working on in its current assessment cycle for the Sixth Assessment Report. It is timed to be available in 2022, one year before the first global stocktake under the Paris Agreement, when governments will review the targets they set under the accord and their progress towards implementing them.
The scoping meeting, hosted by the Government of Singapore, runs from 21 to 23 October, and brings together 80 experts from some 38 countries and IPCC Bureau members. It will be followed by a Session of the IPCC Bureau on 24-25 October.
“We will make this Synthesis Report not only a value-added document for policymakers, providing the best available science, as did all previous synthesis reports, but also a more useful resource for policy leaders around the globe,” said IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee, who is leading the preparation and writing of the report.
Over the past 12 months the IPCC, the world’s leading body for assessing the science related to climate change, has released three special reports – on global warming of 1.5ºC, on land use, and on the ocean and cryosphere – and a methodology report. The three IPCC Working Groups are now preparing their contributions to the Sixth Assessment Report, which will be released in 2021.
The scoping meeting in Singapore will draft the outline or contents of the Synthesis Report for consideration by the IPCC at its next meeting in early 2020.
Governments agreed in Paris in 2015 to respond to climate change by limiting global warming to well below 2ºC above pre-industrial levels while pursuing efforts to hold it to 1.5ºC. Each government decides its own actions in furtherance of this goal, known as Nationally Determined Contributions. They agreed to review progress towards the goal in a global stocktake every five years starting in 2023.
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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 policymakers with regular scientific assessments concerning climate change, its implications and potential future risks, and to put forward adaptation and mitigation strategies. It has 195 member states. In the same year the UN General Assembly endorsed the action by WMO and UNEP in jointly establishing the IPCC.
IPCC assessments provide governments, at all levels, with scientific information that they can use to develop climate policies. IPCC assessments are a key input into the international negotiations to tackle climate change. IPCC reports are drafted and reviewed in several stages, thus guaranteeing objectivity and transparency.
The IPCC assesses the thousands of scientific papers published each year to inform policymakers about the state of knowledge on climate change. The IPCC identifies where there is agreement in the scientific community, where there are differences and where further research is needed. It does not conduct its own research.
To produce its reports, the IPCC mobilizes hundreds of scientists. These scientists and officials are drawn from diverse backgrounds. Only a dozen permanent staff work in the IPCC’s Secretariat.
The IPCC has three working groups: Working Group I (the physical science basis of climate change); Working Group II (impacts, adaptation and vulnerability); and Working Group III (mitigation of climate change). It also has a Task Force on National Greenhouse Gas Inventories that develops methodologies for estimating emissions and removals. All of these are supported by Technical Support Units guiding the production of IPCC assessment reports and other products.
IPCC Assessment Reports consist of contributions from each of the three working groups and a Synthesis Report. Special Reports undertake a shorter assessment of specific cross-disciplinary issues that usually span more than one working group.
About the Sixth Assessment Cycle
At its 41st Session in February 2015, the IPCC decided to produce a Sixth Assessment Report (AR6). At its 42nd Session in October 2015 it elected a new Bureau that would oversee the work on this report and Special Reports to be produced in the assessment cycle.
The Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C was released in October 2018, Climate Change and Land in August 2019, and The Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate in September 2019.
The three Working Group contributions to AR6 will be released in 2021, with the Synthesis Report completing the cycle in April 2022.
More information about the AR6 Synthesis Report is available here:
For more information go to www.ipcc.ch