Research Papers

Climate change and global warming

Publication Year: 2006

Author(s): Rajendra K Pachauri


The problem of human-induced climate change is one that scientists have been highlighting for more than a century. One prominent scientist who projected the problem even before the end of the twentieth century was Professor Svante Arrhenius, winner of the Nobel Prize for Chemistry. But what is impressive is the fact that he predicted the occurrence of climate change as a result of the burning of growing quantities of coal by human beings in the developed countries. He estimated that this would actually create a much higher concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, as a consequence of which the earth's climate would change towards much warmer temperatures.

Throughout the twentieth century further scientific work confirmed the seriousness of the problem, leading to the UN taking a decision for setting up the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This body was established in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Since, then the IPCC has brought out three major assessment reports and a number of special reports by mobilizing the best talent from across the globe to assess all aspects of climate change. The IPCC is currently working on the completion of the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), which would be released by the end of 2007. However, some important findings of the Third Assessment Report (TAR) need to be highlighted.

Source: IIC Quarterly 33 (2): 108-114p.

Publisher/Organisation: India International Centre