IPCC 2013 report coverOn 27 September 2013 the The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published its highly anticipated summary for policymakers, in advance of its fifth assessment report that will be published in early 2014. This special episode of the podcast, explores briefly the origins of the organisation that produced this landmark report and, in more detail, the difficult international negotiations that have used the IPCC’s findings since its inception. This historical overview ends with the question whether we can learn anything from previous problems of atmospheric pollution, in this case the Great London Smog and the ozone hole, to tackle global warming.

The podcast concludes with a brief interview of historical climatologist Dagomar Degroot and his response to the summary of the fifth assessment report from the perspective of climate history. Dagomar is a PhD Candidate in environmental history at York University in Toronto, Canada.

Relevant web resources
Dagomar Degroot, Understanding the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, HistoricalClimatology.com

Maggie Koerth Baker, “The value of talking about values. It’s time to be explicit about how our beliefs affect what we think should be done with the science of climate change“, Ensia, 25 September 2013.

Met Office, The Great Smog of 1952

Jan Oosthoek, “The IPCC and the Ozone Hole: a Warning from History“, Globalizations, March 2008, Vol. 5, No. 1, 63-66.

Music credits
Forward” by Northbound, available from Free Music Archive
Alice In the City” by Doxent Zsigmond, available from ccMixter
Improvisation On Friday…” by Alex, available from ccMixter