Climate change beginning to affect world: IPCC report

The effects of climate change are already visible across the world, specially among vulnerable population of countries like India, the new report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said Monday.

"The effects of climate change are already occurring on all continents and across the oceans. The world, in many cases, is ill-prepared for a changing climate," the report said.

The report 'Climate Change 2014: Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability' from United Nation's IPCC details the impacts of climate change to date, the future risks from a changing climate and the opportunities for effective action to reduce risks.

The IPCC report said climate change impacts are already widespread across all continents and oceans and rapidly worsening. It states that in Asia, this climate chaos can bring about floods, heat-related mortality, and drought and water related food shortage.

The report also states that climate change will have a negative impact on wheat yields in South Asia and an increase in riverine, coastal, and urban flooding can lead to widespread damage to infrastructure, livelihoods and settlements, in the continent.

Urging the Indian government to take steps to address India's vulnerability, environmental NGO Greepeace India said this might mean likely impact on cities such as Mumbai and Kolkata in India and Dhaka in Bangladesh.

"It clearly shows that continuing on the path of coal and high carbon emissions will hurt India's development and economy eventually," said Arpana Udupa, campaigner, Greenpeace India.

Surendra Kumar, a Delhi University professor and one of the authors of the report, said: "India is among countries with high vulnerability as it has a large number of poor people. Issues like food security and unpredictable monsoons are issues which are directly affected by climate change".

Elaborating on the economic aspects of climate change on vulnerable populations, he gave an example where the report mentions that in countries like India, tourism, specially those in coastal areas, can be affected due to climate change.

"The frequency and the intensity of natural calamities like the Uttarakhand floods and the Odisha cyclone are going to be more. This will start affecting a large number of people," he said.

The report, which was released in Yokohama in Japan, however, concludes that there are opportunities to respond to such risks, though the risks will be difficult to mange with high levels of warming.

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