• 3 December 2020 14:00 t0 15:30 GMT.
  • This closed briefing is open to parliamentarians and parliamentary staff.
  • We can extend invitations to attend to government officials and civil servants. If you belong to one of these groups please register via Eventbrite and contact us at postevents@parliament.uk to discuss your attendance.
  • Anyone else who registers will receive an summary after the completion of the event.
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About this event

Insufficient emissions reductions could lead to warming scenarios beyond 1.5°C that trigger global changes and feedbacks in the cryosphere that may be rapid and to some degree irreversible (several tens of thousands of years). The most significant dynamics include sea-level rise from polar ice sheets; polar ocean acidification; mountain glacier loss; permafrost thaw and related CO2/methane emissions; and, Arctic sea ice loss.

All these changes will impose dramatic impacts on the global climate system, as well as local people and ecosystems. The near-immediate cryosphere response as temperatures rise beyond 1.5°C and CO2 passes 450ppm, underscores the urgency of sharp emissions reductions by 2030 as the IPCC has outlined.

With even temporary overshoot above 1.5°C, researchers believe the cryosphere system is close to changes that will persist for many generations, but which may still be averted with enough reductions and forward planning.

The briefing will include a Q&A with the speakers.


Professor Julie Brigham-Grette, UMass-Amherst and Chair, U.S. Polar Research Board (Ice Sheets/SLR)

Dr Gustaf Hugelius, Bolin Centre for Climate Research, Stockholm University (Permafrost)

Dr Heidi Sevestre, University Centre in Svalbard (Mountain Glaciers and Snow)

Dr Helen Findlay, PML (Polar and High Latitude Oceans)

Professor Julienne Stroeve, University College London/University of Manitoba/NSIDC (Sea Ice)

Dr Joeri Rogelj, Imperial College London (SR1.5 Emissions Pathways)

Beth Viola, Holland and Knight, Clinton NSC and Gore/Obama climate advisor, U.S. Transition/Climate Change

Pam Pearson, former U.S. climate negotiator and Director, ICCI

Speaker TBC from the Cabinet Office

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