Higher temperatures could mean economic decline — IPCC

THE world economy stands to recede if global temperatures continue to rise.

The Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) sounded the warning knell in Kingston on Wednesday at the launch of a three-day symposium intended to bring policymakers, academia, students and the media into the know about the workings of the body which assesses the science related to climate change.

Speaking at the launch, IPCC chair Dr Hoesung Lee said the global impact could be a loss of 1.22 per cent with warming of just one degree Celsius.

In Jamaica’s case, severe weather events spawned by the warming have already caused economic losses.

“We do know that any major shifts in weather severity and patterns could mean a significant loss of Gross Domestic Product for Jamaica, and indeed we are no strangers to this. As far back as 2006 Jamaica recorded a 7.3 per cent loss to GDP as a result of the impacts of climate change,” Minister Without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation Daryl Vaz said Wednesday.

“An Inter-American Development Bank report on Jamaica’s Catastrophe Risk Profile has also revealed that the country is at risk of average annual losses of US$105 million due to hurricanes, and other extreme weather events. We cannot sit by and allow climate change to derail our progress, and so we remain committed to the goals of the Paris Agreement,” the minister added.

He noted that experts are warning that the current rate of global warming is already causing impacts beyond the current adaptive capacity of many countries, particularly Small Island Developing States (SIDS) such as Jamaica, and added that even with the Paris Agreement’s provision to limit global warming to an initial 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial figures, significant residual impacts and losses are predicted. Read more

Source: Jamaica Observer