Broad threat to humanity from cumulative climate hazards intensified by greenhouse gas emissions

Camilo Mora, Daniele Spirandelli, Erik C. Franklin, John Lynham, Michael B. Kantar, Wendy Miles, Charlotte Z. Smith, Kelle Freel, Jade Moy, Leo V. Louis, Evan W. Barba, Keith Bettinger, Abby G. Frazier, John F. Colburn IX, Naota Hanasaki, Ed Hawkins, Yukiko Hirabayashi, Wolfgang Knorr, Christopher M. Little, Kerry EmanuelJustin Sheffield, Jonathan A. Patz, Cynthia L. Hunter

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

52 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The ongoing emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs) is triggering changes in many climate hazards that can impact humanity. We found traceable evidence for 467 pathways by which human health, water, food, economy, infrastructure and security have been recently impacted by climate hazards such as warming, heatwaves, precipitation, drought, floods, fires, storms, sea-level rise and changes in natural land cover and ocean chemistry. By 2100, the world’s population will be exposed concurrently to the equivalent of the largest magnitude in one of these hazards if emmisions are aggressively reduced, or three if they are not, with some tropical coastal areas facing up to six simultaneous hazards. These findings highlight the fact that GHG emissions pose a broad threat to humanity by intensifying multiple hazards to which humanity is vulnerable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1062-1071
Number of pages10
JournalNature Climate Change
Volume8
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Dec 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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    Mora, C., Spirandelli, D., Franklin, E. C., Lynham, J., Kantar, M. B., Miles, W., Smith, C. Z., Freel, K., Moy, J., Louis, L. V., Barba, E. W., Bettinger, K., Frazier, A. G., Colburn IX, J. F., Hanasaki, N., Hawkins, E., Hirabayashi, Y., Knorr, W., Little, C. M., ... Hunter, C. L. (2018). Broad threat to humanity from cumulative climate hazards intensified by greenhouse gas emissions. Nature Climate Change, 8(12), 1062-1071. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41558-018-0315-6