For once, this email isn’t asking you to do anything at all. It’s merely
sharing the news--the amazing news--that arrived about 45 minutes ago at
Rajendra Pachauri is the U.N.’s top climate scientist. He leads the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which every five years
produces the authoritative assessment of climate science. Their last
report, in 2007, helped set the target of 450 ppm (parts per million of
CO2) that many environmental groups and national governments have
adopted as their goal for Copenhagen.
As you all know, that number is out of date. When Jim Hansen and other
scientists looked at phenomenon like the Arctic ice melt of the last two
summers, they produced new data demonstrating that 350 is the bottom
line for the planet.
But it’s been hard to get that news out to the powers that be.
So today it comes as enormous and welcome news that Dr. Pachauri, from
his New Delhi office, said that 350 was the number.
“As chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) I
cannot take a position because we do not make recommendations,” said
Rajendra Pachauri when asked if he supported calls to keep atmospheric
carbon dioxide concentrations below 350 parts per million (ppm).
“But as a human being I am fully supportive of that goal. What is
happening, and what is likely to happen, convinces me that the world
must be really ambitious and very determined at moving toward a 350
target,” he told Agence France Presse in an interview.
It’s your work that has made this breakthrough possible. In fact,
Pachauri specifically cited the last big piece of news for 350: the
decision of 80+ small island nations and less developed countries to
endorse the 350 target.
“I think this is a good development,” said Pachauri. “Now people --
including some scientists -- see the seriousness of the impacts of
climate change, and the fact that things are going to get substantially
worse than what we had anticipated.”
This news makes it much easier for all of us to push hard leading up to
the International Day of Climate Action on the 24th of October (signup
to start or attend an event at www.350.org
, and the UN Climate
Conference in Copenhagen this December.
It’s clear now that science is powerfully on the side of the 350 target.
Now we need the political world to follow suit. You will make that
happen in the next two months. Oct. 24 is officially 60 days away, and
we’re building just the momentum we need to make it count.
Thanks for all you do,