The earth has warmed by more than a degree Celsius since the 19th century. While this may sound an insignificant rise in temperature, it can cause magnanimous changes in living conditions. A United Nations (UN) report has listed the consequences of temperature rise in global warming from 1.5 to 2 degree Celsius.
Status of Arctic summer sea ice
Increase in 1.5 degree Celsius, the sea ice will remain through the summer, however at 2 degrees, it Arctic will most likely have an ice-free summer. This additional warming could mean greater habitat losses for polar bears, whales, seals and sea birds. But warming temperatures could benefit Arctic fisheries.
Extreme heat will be much more common worldwide under 2°C of warming compared to 1.5°C, with the tropics experiencing the biggest increase in the number of “highly unusual” hot days. It will also increase the number of dry days and cause droughts, especially in the Mediterranean region.
Flora and Fauna
At 2 degrees, about 18% insects, 16% plants and 8% vertebrates lose their range. Coral reefs that have frequent mass mortalities at 1.5 degrees will mostly disappear at 2% warming. Apart from this, about 32 to 80 million people are exposed to flooding due to sea water level rise.
The report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, compiled by hundreds of scientists from around the world, warns that these dangers are no longer remote or hypothetical.
Nations have delayed curbing their greenhouse gas emissions for so long that warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) is now all but inevitable. At current rates of warming, the world will likely cross the 1.5-degree threshold between 2030 and 2052, well within the lifetime of most adults and children alive today.
And 1.5 degrees is a best-case scenario. Without an extremely rapid, and perhaps unrealistic, global push to zero out fossil fuel emissions and remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) or higher this century looks more likely.