Rising Sea Levels and Less Rain: Better Science to Hone Climate Change Warnings
The next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change forecasts won’t be released until late 2013. But insiders say that thanks to faster computers and better models, the report will offer more precise predictions and adjust anticipated changes in sea levels and precipitation.
The world’s climate forecasting specialists will soon be releasing much-anticipated new predictions concerning a number of extremely weighty questions: How warm will the climate really get? Will sea levels continue to rise? Where will it rain more, and where less?
The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) won’t announce its latest round of forecasts until the end of next year, but confidential draft versions are already circulating within scientific circles.
The field of climate research has advanced since the IPCC’s last assessment report, released in 2007, as computers have grown faster and models more complex. In fact, these developments make what insiders say the IPCC’s message will be all the more astonishing: The new forecasts, they say, will be more or less the same as the old ones, just more precise.