Climate change experts are now warning that government entities need to do more to prevent and stop global warming from continuing. They warn that the current goal, which is 2 degrees Celsius, is too low, and ultimately will not stop the damage that is being done. An article published originally in Climate Change Responses, Petra Tschakert points out that a target of 1.5 degrees Celsius would be far more appropriate than the current 2-degree goal.

That might not seem like much of a difference, but the article warns that it really has become a matter of grave danger for humans walking on Earth. Tschakert, of Penn State University wrote that, “Without a doubt, it is in the utmost interest of a large number of countries to pursue the 1.5°C target, as ambitious or idealistic it may appear to date, and to see it anchored as a binding goal…”

However, Tscharkert isn’t the first to point out a changing goal when it comes to climate change. In fact, Hans-Otto Pörtner, of Alfred Wegener Institute pointed out last year that it really should be a goal to reach a 1.5-degree reduction. All scientists point out that while humans might not feel the direct impacts of a .5-degree difference, but ultimately the real problem comes for other organisms. Some species would struggle to adapt in conditions, like this.

The big problem that scientists and climate change experts face globally is the political opposition to it. In every major country around the world, political opposition is a major reason for the stopping or preventing of better climate change measures from being enforced. That combined with the lobbying that occurs within these larger governments to appease big businesses that ultimately have a financial gain in the matter.

It’s an interesting perspective though, and one that will certainly be shared by others – as more rally around a cleaner, more friendly environment moving forward. However, it isn’t just about making the environment cleaner, but rather making the world a better place to live generally given the damage that we are now doing to our atmosphere.


  1. Very interesting development. Always suspected 2 deg C was “too convenient” a round number and possibly not restrictive enough (or maybe too strict – I didn’t know which). Given recent data and the current rate of change in influence on flora and especially fauna, we need a tighter rein to protect the word we live in. Is limiting to 1.5. C rise a suitable goal? I know it would be a hard sell. Maybe we should be political about it and call for 1.9 limit for now, and quickly revise that downward as the data becomes more ominous.
    Incidentally, the article talks inaccurately about a “1.5-degree reduction”, but we all know what was meant.

  2. Wow. Just wow, so if you could go back in time, say 10,000 years and see the glaciers that cover all of Canada, would you pour that bucket of water on the cavemans fire and say “no no no”

    • Plants store carbon. When a plant is burned the carbon is released. Oil and coal are the products of billions of plants collected over millions of years. When they are burned over a hundred year period millions of years worth of carbon is released.

      • Sure, plants are carbon, and nitrogen, hyrogen,oxygen, silica and a myriad of other elements. So when fossil fuels are burned over millions of years worth of plants are released, but at the height of the Carboniforos Era when all those fossil fuel was created the oxygen levels of the atmosphere was at 30%, compared to todays 20%. A majority of those trees were not being fossilized and re-releasing the carbon back into the atmosphere when they decayed. So my point is that it mighty high to think its the end of the world when the Earth naturally shift and swings by more than 10% from its current climate.

  3. Petra is correct. If we all don’t listen to their advice, all our opinions don’t matter, and we will all live through famine and despair.

    Look at the warning signs. Do to the solar cycle we should be entering a little ice age. Yet the Atlantic heat transport engine is slowing down as predicted by most climate change scientist. (if you don’t understand them, look at Al Gore’s layman version).

    If more of these predictions come true, it really does not matter. Like losing the ice sheets in the next few year, we should all do our part in helping avoid this problem. The time is ticking, and political inaction will probably be dealt with accountability.

  4. My point is that there were no factories or cars in the time of the caveman, which is like a minute ago in geological time, and yet the expansive glaciers that covered most the northern continents melted. As far as burning fossil fuel the oxygen level was at 30% during the Carboniforos Era when the majority of fossil fuel was created. In the sixties “scientists” were considered that the global climate was heading into another Ice Age, which we are still technically in since the the Poles are covered in ice.
    There is just too much energy being expended in the climate change argument that other more pressing issues like garbage and waste management that most modern cities and countries continue to ignore. Most sewers still go directly into rivers and oceans.

  5. Spartan66, if we take 10,000 years to warm the planet a few degrees, all the flora and most of the fauna will adapt. A few extinctions will occur with or without change. What worries most scientists is the current incredible rate of change, which historically creates havoc with food chains and can precipitate mass extinctions. We would not want to do that to our world, nor have our kids struggle through the hardships we failed to avoid. That’s why we have to assess our goals and discuss changing them. It’s a very healthy discussion. If the scientific consensus is to stick with 2 degrees, fine. If they feel we should change it, we would be wise to listen.


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