Greece: After fires, experts sound alarm over grim climate future
Climate experts say last month’s wildfires that razed 100,000 hectares (247,000 acres) of Greek forest are only a small sampling of the environmental and economic devastation the country will face due to a warming planet this century.
“Climate is changing in the Mediterranean Basin … faster than global trends,” said the first assessment on the region by MedECC, a group of Mediterranean experts on climate and environmental change, published last September.
Whereas average global temperatures have risen 1.1C above those of pre-industrial times, average temperatures across the Mediterranean are already 1.5C higher, the report says, and are projected to rise by an additional 3.8C to 6.5C by 2100 under current trends.
Even if Greece did everything perfectly, though, it remains at the mercy of other carbon emitters. The IPCC believes global temperature increases may be held at 1.4C by 2100 if countries hew to pledges of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. But climate scientists and energy experts admit that stated policies are insufficient to achieve this.