Facing the challenges of climate risks and prospects for readiness that transform our future

Climate is changing Europe

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We know Europe is changing, from political realignment to humanitarian crises. Change is the new normal. And behind the headlines, the climate continues its relentless dynamic of new records and startling impacts in Europe.

Now, a new report from the European Environement Agency, coordinated by the longstanding climate expert-champion, Hans-Martin Fussel. 

My TOP FIVE headlines:

Numero Uno: Humans have significantly changed the climate and increased the magnitue of many extreme weather events. NOT news! Definitely NOT fake news! Again and again, this is the headline we must act on.

Number one for business: Economic costs can potentially be high, even for modest levels of climate change. AND these costs rise significantly with greater levels of warming. Our economies are suffering today, and this will not go away.

At the heart of the matter (but No. 3 here): Climate change impacts interact with other developments inside and outside Europe. Going back to my roots, 'No man is an island' (name that author) and currently, 'no country can remove itself from climate change' (I made that up). Or as I've often said, this is a glocal issue, both and intimately global and local (that is from Eric Swyngedou). 

Bottom line (as 4 and 5): we need glocal leadership, desparately. The report's headlines are rather staid but still a call to action:

* Mitigation of climate change is required to limit the long-term risks from climate change

* Adaptation to climate change is necessary to reduce short- and long-term risks from climate change

Or as we said in the IPCC two cycles past, mitigation and adaptation are policy complements. 

A fact-filled baseline of what we know. European benchmarks for climate impacts


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