Opening Remarks by the IPCC Chair at the Special IPCC-SBSTA event on the Working Group III contribution to the Sixth Assessment Report

Wednesday 8 June 2022
Bonn, Germany

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Thank you, Tosi/Chair,

Welcome to this special event to present the IPCC Working Group III report, following our special event on the Working Group II report on Monday and yesterday’s first part of the Structured Expert Dialogue.

We again very much look forward to this opportunity for a direct exchange with you on our findings.

Today’s meeting responds to the Glasgow COP invitation to the IPCC to present its forthcoming reports. It will be followed by the second structured expert dialogue session this afternoon looking at this report.

The Working Group III report provides an updated global assessment of climate change mitigation progress and pledges and examines the sources of global emissions, assessing the impact of national climate pledges in relation to the long-term climate goals.

Among the innovations in this report, which builds on the 2014 Fifth Assessment and the special reports prepared earlier in the Sixth Assessment cycle, are a new chapter on the social aspects of mitigation exploring the “demand side” – what drives consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, and serving as a complement to the traditional sectoral chapters on what produces emissions.

This report also includes a cross-sector chapter on mitigation options cutting across sectors including carbon dioxide removal techniques, and a new chapter on innovation, technology development and transfer.

The Working Group III report, finalized only two months ago, assesses progress made in limiting global emissions as well as available options across sectors and systems for reducing and stopping the global warming

The IPCC WGI  report on Physical Science Basis launched in August last year and presented to you on Glasgow in November last year showed that human activities have warmed the planet at a rate not seen in at least the past 2000 years and  we are on course to reaching global warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius within the next two decades.

As we heard on Monday in the Working Group II report, these levels of warming are posing a grave and mounting threat to the wellbeing of billions of people and the health of life on the planet and that the next few years offer a rapidly closing window to realize a sustainable, livable future for all.  

Our event will follow the structure of the Summary for Policymakers, looking at recent developments and current trends; system transformations to limit global warming; linkages between mitigation, adaptation and sustainable development; and strengthening the response to climate change.

You will shortly hear the detail from IPCC Co-chairs and authors who prepared the report. But let me summarize the key findings:

We are at a crossroads. The decisions we make now can ensure a liveable future. We have the tools and know-how required to limit warming.

But we have experienced the highest decadal increase in greenhouse gas emissions in human history and we are not on track to limit warming to 1.5ºC.

There is increasing evidence of climate action and there are options available in all sectors that can at least halve emissions by 2030.

The next few years will be critical. But there are ways to improve our chances of success.

However, unless there are immediate and deep greenhouse gas emission reductions across all sectors and regions, 1.5ºC is beyond reach.

Looking beyond technology, the report shows that financial flows are three to six times lower than levels needed by 2030 to limit warming to below 2ºC. However, there is sufficient global capital and liquidity to close investment gaps.

Without ambitious climate action, sustainable development cannot be achieved. Before we invite Jim Skea and Priyadarshi Shukla, Co-Chairs of Working Group III to begin the presentation, we will watch a video dedicated to the report. I look forward to our discussion.