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Bristol scientist contributes to latest IPCC report

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Press release issued: 13 April 2014

Members of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will approve the Summary for Policymakers of the Working Group III (WGIII) contribution to the Fifth Assessment Report and accept the underlying scientific and technical assessment at a meeting in Berlin, Germany today.

WGIII assesses all relevant options for mitigating climate change through limiting or preventing greenhouse gas emissions and enhancing activities that remove them from the atmosphere.

Dr Jo House of Bristol's School of Geographical Sciences is one of the world-leading researchers who have contributed to the Working Group III report.

Dr House was a lead author on Chapter 11: Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Use.  She worked on historical emissions of greenhouse gases resulting from human land use and changes in land cover such as deforestation.

She said: "There is a lot that can be done to limit greenhouse gas emissions with available technology at low cost.  Much of it has benefits such as improved energy security, reduced pollution and improved health.

"The cost of clean renewable energy has come down rapidly, and is an important part of the green economy in many countries.  Alternatives to short car journeys such as public transport, walking or cycling improve personal and public health.  Eating red meat fewer times a week can be healthy and reduce pressure on destruction of tropical forests to produce animal feed.

"There are many things we can do as individuals, as businesses and as countries that will improve things for ourselves, and others without compromising our quality of life.  If we act now, we will avoid more severe impacts of climate change in the future, at lower cost than if we wait and leave future generations to deal with our legacy."

The Cabot Institute

The Cabot Institute carries out fundamental and responsive research on risks and uncertainties in a changing environment.   It drives new research in the interconnected areas of climate change, natural hazards, water and food security, low carbon energy, and future cities.  Its research fuses rigorous statistical and numerical modelling with a deep understanding of social, environmental and engineered systems – past, present and future. It seeks to engage wider society by listening to, exploring with, and challenging its stakeholders to develop a shared response to 21st Century challenges. 

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