This is The News In Brief from the United Nations.
Limiting global warming to 1.5°C will require ‘unprecedented changes’ – UN expert panel
It will take a lot of work on a scale far greater than previously predicted, but limiting global warming to 1.5°C is possible and it will have major benefits for the planet, according to the UN’s top panel of experts on Climate Change (the IPCC).
The Panel issued a special report on Monday, in Incheon, South Korea, with suggestions on how to limit the damage caused by global warming. Experts agree that countries must step up their efforts urgently, and make “unprecedented changes”.
Here’s Valerie Masson-Delmotte, who took part in drafting this report:
“We were invited to prepare this report three years ago because there was not enough knowledge on the subtle differences between global warming of 1.5°C and 2.0°C. And I’m impressed by the amount of new knowledge – 6,000 publications accessed in the report. And what comes out is a clear benefit in limiting warming to 1.5°C compared to 2.0°C to avoid multiple risks. And I want to stress risks associated for instance with heatwaves, heavy rainfalls, drought in many regions.”
So, the stakes are high… Today, the world is 1 degree warmer than in pre-industrial times.
And according to the Head of the UN World Meteorological Organization who briefed the press,
in Geneva, on Monday, we could spare the suffering of 420 million people, if we do collectively manage to limit global warming to the 1.5 degrees Celsius mark, instead of 2.
UN agencies providing life-saving assistance in Haiti after earthquake
In Haiti, according to authorities, about 12 people have died and 151 others have been injured, in the 5.9 magnitude earthquake that struck the north-west of the island on Saturday.
The earthquake, which was felt across most of Haiti and in Santo Domingo in the neighbouring Dominican Republic, left several houses destroyed or damaged.
While needs assessments are still being carried out, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Health Organisation (WHO), the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the World Food Programme (WFP) are supporting national, regional and local authorities in distributing shelter, water and sanitation items.
Over the weekend, UN chief, Antonio Guterres, extended his condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government of Haiti and reiterated the UN’s readiness to support Government-led response efforts.
Frontier technologies can help us achieve a sustainable future and solve global social problems
Artificial intelligence, renewable energy, drones, genetic engineering, blockchains… These “frontier technologies” can be major assets in our efforts towards sustainable development, according to a new UN report launched on Monday… But they can also pose serious ethical problems, and be the cause of unemployment, underemployment and greater inequality.
The report, titled “2018 World Economic and Social Survey: Frontier technologies for sustainable development”, analyses the impacts of these technologies and identifies policy measures for countries to ensure that a good balance is found between economic efficiency, equity and moral considerations…
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Monday that “it is not a given that frontier technologies will make life better…” and that “While they have the potential to deliver huge dividends…if mismanaged – they can have serious adverse effects on societies.”
Natalie Hutchison, United Nations.
Yasmina Guerda, UN News